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San Sebastian activates an economic stimulus plan of more than 8.4 million euros with a special focus on youth, equality and territorial cohesion

The San Sebastian City Council, through Fomento San Sebastian, is promoting this Plan with an investment of 8,457,723 €.

4 million is earmarked for developing job opportunities for groups with greater difficulties in accessing the labour market.

The San Sebastian City Council and its Department of Economic Development, with the aim of laying the foundations for the future of the city, is launching, through Fomento San Sebastian, the DSS 2022 Economic Development Plan, with a budget of 8.4 million euros.

The Plan includes five lines of action with the corresponding budget allocations:

  • Boosting territorial cohesion and employment for groups with greater difficulties in accessing the labour market, such as young people, women and people over 45 years of age. 4 million euros
  • Promotion of new business projects, encouraging entrepreneurship.1 million euros.
  • Strengthening the business fabric of quality services and supporting them in their digital transformation. 2.19 million euros.
  • Promoting science and innovation as a commitment and a city brand. 476,890 euros.
  • Sustainable and innovative urban transformations. 686,101 euros.

The Mayor of San Sebastian, Eneko Goia, pointed out that "the City Council is a driving force and reactivator of the economy, and this new economic stimulus plan aims to support the people and sectors that are having the worst time after two tough years of pandemic, which are gradually coming to an end, but which still require us to make an effort from the public authorities".

In this regard, Goia recalled that "the City Council is a public agent that must accompany entrepreneurial initiative, as it means generating activity and new opportunities in the city. Attracting investment that generates employment and opportunities for all the people of San Sebastian is something that concerns us, and with this plan we seek to contribute to the creation of employment for groups with greater difficulties in accessing the labour market, as well as continuing to support innovation and science as strategic sectors for the city".

For her part, the Councillor for Economic Impulse, Marisol Garmendia, pointed out that "from a socio-economic point of view, we are launching the Plan at a time when the city is recovering pre-pandemic data, with a drop in unemployment and a significant increase in the number of people affiliated to Social Security. But we cannot ignore reality either, and although the data are good, the gender gap still exists in the labour market, the difficulties in finding a job for people over 45 or at risk of exclusion persist, and young people continue to struggle day after day to access quality employment".

For Garmendia, "it is time to lay the foundations of our economic model through a plan that invests in the future, that is: young people, the digitalisation of traditional sectors, innovation, science and leaving no one behind. If we have learned anything over the years, it is that the most vulnerable groups must be given special attention".

The DSS 2022 Economic Boost Plan will articulate different programmes. Each group involved will be able to apply for different grants as long as the corresponding requirements are met: financial support, training, advice, events that provide visibility or support for the retention or attraction of talent.

A Plan for equality

The main groups in which employment opportunities will be developed are young people, people over 45 years of age and women, a group in which the Plan will have a greater involvement. There are programmes to improve the employability of the most vulnerable women (unemployed, single-parent families, women at risk of social exclusion, etc.) and women living in the eastern area of San Sebastian, in order to achieve their insertion in the labour market.

Half of the investment is aimed at specific programmes to create a cohesive city, in which different groups have access to aid and opportunities, always in collaboration with other agents in the city: companies, training centres, associations or institutions that form part of the entrepreneurial and innovative ecosystem.

On the other hand, women with higher qualifications will also be able to benefit from mobility grants for the return of talent or for the recruitment of unemployed women under 35 years of age with higher academic training.

San Sebastian, an entrepreneurial city

The 2022 Economic Impulse Plan has entrepreneurship as one of its main axes. Fomento de San Sebastián is a benchmark in these policies.

Thus, the Plan includes specific programmes to support the creation of more competitive companies in traditional sectors, as well as for innovative entrepreneurship or to promote the competitiveness of companies in the growth and consolidation phase.

Transformation towards a city of quality services

San Sebastian has a rich business fabric that revolves mainly around the service sector, with special relevance in recent years in advanced services. Accompanying companies in their growth or settlement phases and in their digital transformation, in order to achieve competitive improvement, is another of the Plan's objectives.

The weight of sectors such as commerce and hospitality in San Sebastian's GDP is very important, employing more than 16,800 employees. The sector is currently undergoing a process of structural transformation, with two major transitions that have had an impact on our commerce: digital and environmental. Added to this are the changes in consumer habits that make it necessary to adapt to this new context. The Plan proposes different programmes focused mainly on strengthening the competitiveness of the more traditional services sector through its progressive digitalisation.

It will also focus on the competitive improvement of advanced knowledge-based services, which represent 44.5% of the productive fabric and 56.6% of employment in the city.

San Sebastian, city of Science and Innovation

Fomento de San Sebastián has been working for years to position our city as a benchmark in Science and Innovation, aware that it provides quality employment, wealth for the city and, therefore, a better quality of life, as well as boosting the city brand".

Although San Sebastian has an extensive innovative ecosystem, as demonstrated by the thirty or so local agents associated with the Basque Science and Technology Network, the city should not be oblivious to a double global challenge: that of generating STEAM vocations and that of promoting equality in science.

In this sense, the Plan includes different initiatives of education for innovation, already consolidated, such as the Donostia Innovation Challenge, together with actions to raise awareness, among which the Innovation Week, which this year will be in its ninth edition, stands out.

In addition, an important asset is underway, such as Talent House 2, a facility that is almost unique in Europe and is at an advanced stage of construction.

Urban Transformation

The sustainable urban development of the city through innovative actions that respond to the needs of citizens and improve their quality of life is another priority of the plan.

All these projects, which will be developed during 2022 in collaboration with the city's agents and companies, will enable the city to adapt to the interests of citizens or specific groups.

In addition, the European Next Generation funds are a strategic opportunity to develop these comprehensive urban transformation projects, through the collaboration of public-private entities in our city that will allow us to maintain the commitment to SMART services that are already being developed in different neighbourhoods of the city.