Competitive industry should be at heart of European Recovery and Resilience Initiative
Ceemet presents its Recovery plan to shape the new normal. It is a 2-step approach with 12 recommendations and action points in 3 key areas for a swift and sustainable recovery that also strengthens the European project. Restoring the single market and rebooting the economy are the basis for that.
The Joint European Roadmap for Recovery offers a solid concept for an economic reboot after the COVID-19 crisis. With different situations in the Member States it is clear that there is no one-size-fits-all solution. However, the EU together with Member States should choose and apply with determination a well-coordinated approach.
In the first step, demand needs to be stimulated alongside with providing liquidity and cash to companies. It is of utmost importance that high standards of sanitary and occupational health and safety (OSH) measures will be maintained. Structurally exchanging smart and practicable OSH protocols favours a successful and safe recovery.
Phase 2 – 12 action points in 3 key areas
All efforts have to focus on revitalising and re-enforcing the Single Market as the foundation of the four freedoms. The recommendations and actions are addressed in the following areas:
I. Restore the European single market and transform it into a seamless secure digital single market.
The upside of the double challenge of reducing the carbon footprint and driving the digital industrial transformation in a restored single market are big opportunities for an internationally competitive industry and quality employment in Europe.
In a world where new standards are being set, Europe should speak with the voice of the biggest single market in the world to maintain rules based free trade, supported by a smart European screening of foreign investment.
This encompasses brokering intelligent agreements with Europe’s key trading partners.
II. Be big on the big things - Finance the future of the European project and agree on the 2021-2027 multiannual financial framework (MFF) on top of the recovery and resilience initiative.
Have the next MFF ready for use by 1 January 2021 including a bold and well targeted recovery and resilience initiative supported by and for the entire EU.
Companies, in particular SMEs, need access to finance at reasonable conditions. To trigger the necessary private investment for recovery, the framework for doing business has to be right. In order to reduce the burden on SMEs as well as start-ups, regulatory initiatives should be prioritised so they contribute to a sustainable recovery and be postponed if the implementation of already approved EU-Directives are not likely to be transposed by Member States.
III. Support national processes to establish fit for future agile labour markets linked with boosting innovative approaches of blended permanent up-and right-skilling.
Agile labour markets rely on the free movement of workers. Create a unitary EU Laissez Passer for frontier and posted workers and replace the 27 national uncoordinated sometimes disproportionate national provisions.
Permanent up- and right-skilling is not a choice. COVID-19 has shown the need for better, more blended and digital and virtual learning. It are the before mentioned agile labour markets that facilitate the uptake of digitalisation in companies and thus the creation of quality employment in industry.
Lessons for the future
Industry must be consulted and the role of social dialogue promoted. The possibility to advance investments to this year, is of importance to companies. Representative and mandated social partners can be of help to identify the sectors that need the support the most.
Ceemet President Diego Andreis says: “We need the right combination of short and long term measures, making this crisis an opportunity for a new and sustainable global European Industrial leadership, with people and technology as key enablers.”
Ceemet Director General Uwe Combüchen adds: “A coordinated and determined relaunch of Europe’s societies and economy after COVID-19 holds the potential to put Europe in the leading position in the world, whether politically, socially, ethically or economically. We have to seize this crisis as a unique opportunity.”