On behalf of the EU chemical industry, Cefic welcomes the Member States’ commitment to ensuring a stable growth path for European industry. This follows the formal adoption today by the EU Council of a call for the Commission to include a coordinated and strategic industry policy in its 2018 work programme to strengthen the future of Europe.
In the Council Conclusions, Member States call on the Commission to “provide a holistic EU industrial policy strategy for the future, in time for the European Council meeting in Spring 2018”. For Member States, “this strategy should present medium to long term strategic objectives for industry and be included in the framework of the Commission’s 2018 work programme, accompanied by an action plan including concrete measures, developed in close consultation with Member States and relevant stakeholders”.
Cefic believes that a holistic industry strategy can support a strong future Europe by including, amongst others:
- Support for energy-intensive industry to ease the transition to a low carbon Europe
- Greater support for applied research & development
- Strict enforcement of REACH at the EU border regarding imported articles
Said Marco Mensink, Cefic Director General, “Today, European companies got a strong signal of support from Member States. The EU chemical industry is ready to work with the Commission on developing and implementing this industry strategy and to help Europe to regain a best-in-class investment climate. In this way Europe can reinforce its position as a global force, making a success of the transition to a low-carbon future and for the future of Europe itself.” Last year saw the industry add over 550bn Euro in turnover to the EU economy.
Earlier this year, 128 industry associations campaigned to make industry the focus of a dedicated Commission plan. The Single Market’s industrial base is increasingly confronted by an aging infrastructure, demographically declining markets and fierce competition from other world regions, particularly the US, China and the Middle East. These regions enjoy advantages making them more competitive such as cheaper energy costs, a more favorable regulatory environment and dedicated industry strategies for important economic contributors such as chemicals.
With this unanimous support from the EU-28 and the Maltese Presidency who were invaluable in driving this ambition, the Commission now has the momentum needed to take a next important step.
- Dr. Hariolf Kottmann, Cefic President, CEO of Clariant in Euronews “Europe is no longer attractive for investment. What should lawmakers do?” 23 February, 2017
- Politico Letter to the Editor from Marco Mensink, Cefic Director General “Europe needs an industrial policy” March 14, 2017
- 2016 Report on Facts & Figures of the EU Chemical Industry
- Click here to read the Council Conclusions