Thursday, May 23, 2013
“We welcome the decision Commissioner Barnier has taken today, not to include solvency rules for occupational pension funds”, commented CEEMET Director General, Uwe Combüchen. “Our members have been concerned about the plan to extend the own-funds requirements to occupational pension funds since it would have considerably increased the costs of occupational pension provision schemes and in the worst case closed them down. Weakening of companies’ capacity to invest and innovate is hence avoided and workers’ occupational pensions are, in line with the objectives of the White Paper on pensions, not affected’, he concluded.
Internal Market and Services Commissioner Barnier has today stated that he intends to present a proposal to improve the governance and transparency of occupational pension funds in the autumn. However, he also stated that the proposal will not cover the issue of solvency rules for pension funds, which will for the time being remain an open issue since more technical information is needed.
Tuesday, May 21, 2013
Sakari Tamminen - CEEMET President and CEO of Rautaruukki, Terry Scuoler – CEEMET Member of the Board of Directors and CEO of CEEMET’s UK member EEF and Uwe Combüchen - CEEMET Director General, met with Commission Vice President Olli Rehn to discuss topical issue including European Economic Governance, Better regulation and Flexible labour markets.
Commented Mr. Combüchen “We had an interesting sharing of views on topics that are high on CEEMET’s agenda, and appreciate that Commissioner Rehn took the time out of his busy schedule to meet us. We discussed our main concerns such as how to create and maintain a competitive labour market - how to ensure a dynamic, flexible and inclusive labour markets, where people possess the right skills and also how to best support European businesses by creating effective, the appropriateness of involving the European Sectoral social partners in Economic Governance and consistent legislation through cumulative impact assessments and improving the existing rules before creating new legislation”.
Thursday, April 18, 2013
The European Commission’s new proposal to review the accounting Directives 78/660/EEC and 83/349/EEC regarding disclosure of non-financial and diversity information by certain large companies and groups is counterproductive.
The very definition and essence of corporate social responsibility (CSR) has been its voluntary nature. Obliging companies, through a directive, to disclose non-financial information would go against this principle and arguably have little to do with CSR.
“Prescribing in detail the aspects that companies should include in their approach to CSR reduces the voluntary nature of CSR and provides less flexibility for companies and thus possibly prevents them to design their own strategies in this field”, commented CEEMET’s Director General Uwe Combüchen. Please click on read more to view CEEMET’s press release.
Wednesday, April 17, 2013
In Spring 2013, the European Commission is due to present its assessment of the implementation of the European Qualifications Framework (EQF). CEEMET has taken an active interest in the EQF since the recommendation was issued in 2008, and welcomes the underlying ideas behind the EQF such as the aim to try and establish a common language between education systems and business, as well as the emphasis on a learning outcome approach and the need for increased transparency between national qualification systems in order to increase mobility. In particular, CEEMET members take an interest in the positioning of vocational education and training in the national qualification frameworks (NQFs) and the involvement of social partners in the referencing process. Click on Read More to view additional information on this item.
Friday, April 12, 2013
CEEMET welcomes the 3 year transposition period for the proposed Electromagnetic Fields (EMF) Directive following the recent compromise agreement reached between Council and Parliament. It is essential that clear guidance, information and assessment tools are available for companies before they begin to make changes to their workplace when they start to implement the Directive. Furthermore, this will be necessary, where companies will implement an extremely technical and complex Directive, which will protect the health and safety of workers.
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
CEEMET Director General Uwe Combüchen participated in a public hearing on Advanced Manufacturing Technologies for clean production on 19 March in Brussels. More specifically, CEEMET took part in a panel discussion on How to reduce skills shortages and competence deficits?
Mr. Combüchen welcomed the EU level emphasis on cooperation between industry and education institutions, both vocational education and training schools and universities ensuring quality training that provides employees with the right skills needed by industry. “We have to implement a culture of lifelong learning and promote lifelong learning for employers and employees since the skills-needs of companies are constantly evolving and changing”, he said.
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
At the European Summit meeting on 14 & 15 March 2013 heads of states and government will address ways to restore the stability of the European economy by tapping new sources of growth and jobs. Industry has been identified to play a major role in this plan. As is stated in the recently published Communication “A Stronger European Industry for Growth and Economic Recovery” the EU must provide the right framework conditions capable of attracting companies to invest in Europe leading to maintaining and ideally creating good quality jobs in industry.
Whilst this statement is welcomed, interfering with national systems and wage setting mechanisms would send the opposite signal. The Euro Plus Pact and its macro-economic imbalances procedure give rise to concerns that, in addition to monitoring of wage related developments in a European context, there will be interferences (“corrective arm”) in matters related to national wage setting mechanisms. Amongst others, such interventions would risk ignoring social partners’ autonomy, putting the competitiveness of manufacturing and the balance of wage setting between trade unions/workers and employers into peril.
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