According to the EESC, the European manufacturing system can only make an effective and competitive transition to a cutting-edge digital and environmentally friendly economy when it is ready for significant investments in innovation. As the main job creators and providers, small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) need particular support. The steps planned by the European Commission to facilitate better development of the manufacturing system should therefore be consistently based on real awareness of companies' – especially SMEs' – needs.
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The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) calls on the Commission to reflect in more depth on policy options that help both to reduce greenhouse gases and thus fight climate change and to maintain competitiveness. The goal must be to better protect and promote the EU's resource and energy-intensive industries (REII), otherwise Europe runs the risk of losing jobs to less clean economies and missing its goal of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.
Education and a level playing field in FTAs are conditions for further progress
The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) and the Industry4Europe coalition held a high-level roundtable on EU Industrial Policy on 7 March in Brussels.
The government, representatives of organised civil society and other interest groups call for fresh impetus for the European Union
In the event of a deal, the UK should stay aligned with EU laws; for chemicals, the REACH regulation is key. As for the aeronautics industry, agreements on reciprocity in the most important areas should be put in place. The planned transition period is too short, however, and should be extended to at least five years.
The European economy loses over 2% of productivity per year due to a mismatch of skills, according to a recent study commissioned by the European Economic and Social Committee. This means a loss of 80 eurocents for each hour of work. The situation will get even worse in the future due to demographic trends and ongoing technological developments, if no reforms are undertaken.
EESC discusses digitalisation and inequalities at the Deutsche Welle Global Media Forum, held in Bonn from 11 to 13 June
Transformation process requires European-wide cooperation
The European institutions must spearhead the optimizing of Europe's medical technology industry, as its performance is currently plagued by excessive fragmentation and growing competition pressures, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) said at its plenary session on 14 February.
All Member States, with the exception of the United Kingdom, Denmark and Malta, have decided to launch permanent structured cooperation (PESCO), pursuant to Section 2 (Articles 42 to 46) and Protocols 10 and 11 to the TEU. The will to introduce a type of differentiated integration has arisen as a political response to the demand from European citizens for greater security. It is a clear message of support for the common values of the Treaty of Rome, particularly now, at a time when the memory of the historical values of peace and cooperation that drove the peoples of the founding Member States to respond unanimously to the horrendous wounds of two world wars is fading in many Member States.