The 10 Points

Find out all of the reasons why Europe needs industry,
and why industry needs Europe even more.

Point 1

Real debate on the future of Europe

The EU offers the largest single market worldwide

The EU offers the largest single market worldwide. If Europe wants to succeed most of the debate and actions must focus on finding new ideas keeping that market seamless.

Citizens, workers and industry deserve new solutions and visions, which will help maintain a social Europe and build sustainable prosperity for all.

Europe needs strong visions and solutions to give confidence to citizens, workers and industry. In recent years, worries and uncertainty about prosperity and our standards of living have too often shaped debates. As a result, they have fuelled the increase in nationalism and protectionism. Euroscepticism must be fought with strong and positive answers.

We believe that boosting industrial competitiveness and seizing the opportunities of digitalisation will help maintain a strong social Europe.One could think for example of massive investments in a seamless European (Digital) Single Market. A human-centric digitalisation and industrial strategy would broaden support amongst citizens for the unique European project… and wash away many critics that Europe is facing today.

We have the opportunity to write a new chapter in Europe’s success story. Let’s first debate on the future of our project with all stakeholders. But one thing is certain: we will do better together in a union than as weaker single nation states.

International competitiveness, social standards, jobs, Single Market

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Point 2

BETTER REGULATION

200,000 companies and their workers rely on meaningful legislation

200,000 companies and their workers rely on meaningful legislation that underwent a competitiveness check before being rigorously implemented.

Businesses, and SMEs in particular, expect legislation that is applicable, enforceable and based on their needs.

A sustainable European Union needs a fit-for-future regulatory framework. Better regulation will boost international competitiveness, business investment and job creation. Businesses, and Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) in particular, expect regulations that are applicable, enforceable and based on their needs.

Ceemet calls for a continuous assessment of existing legislation. Is it cost effective? Is it really applicable, especially for SMEs? Does it leave room to develop new technologies? Will it boost or hamper the creation of start-ups?

We believe EU institutions and Member States must make efforts to improve national implementation and enforce existing EU regulatory framework, before introducing any new regulation. If not intended to fix a problem, not based on comprehensive and objective impact assessments, and not enforceable, regulation becomes nothing but a burden.

International competitiveness, social standards, jobs, Single Market

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Point 3

International competitiveness

The European Tech & Industry sector has reached an annual 1.5% growth rate in productivity

+%

The European Tech & Industry sector has reached an annual 1.5% growth rate in productivity in most years since 2010.

Only a healthy and internationally-competitive industry can sustain the EU’s high social standards.

European policy-makers must make a clear commitment on the importance of the international competitiveness of the industry, and act accordingly. Only a well-performing industry will create growth, wealth, prosperity and jobs.

In these uncertain times, the principles upon which wealth has been created by the Single Market are under threat. However we have the potential to successfully manage the disruptive changes driven by digitalisation.

Ceemet believes a well-managed European digital project will result in a more equitable creation of growth and prosperity for all citizens.

International competitiveness, social standards, jobs, Single Market

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Point 4

Digital industrial era

€ 119 billion has been invested by companies in company equipment

Billion

€ 119 billion has been invested by companies in company equipment, taking a first step to ensure digital transformation.

The next chapter of the European Union’s success story will be digital.

Europe must prepare for a digital future, and see digitalisation as an opportunity, rather than a threat. Digitalisation will see jobs disappear and new ones created. Ceemet believes new technologies in general could have a positive effect on jobs at the EU level.

Digital transformation can only be successfully managed and turned into opportunities through a genuine European effort. Therefore, the European Digital Single Market (DSM) strategy has to be swiftly completed and implemented with the full commitment of all Member States. Although digitalisation is driven by technological progress, the human factor is at the heart of this development.

We also urge European policy-makers to better streamline initiatives such as the Digital Innovation Hubs. They must shorten time-to-market for innovation to ensure that European-funded ideas are produced and marketed inside the EU. Ceemet welcomes more and more-easily-accessible co-funding on research, development and innovation for industry and tech start-ups, infrastructures, technical standards and schemes for digital right-skilling, in particular for SMEs. A well-coordinated European digital strategy will enable our industry to remain or become a global champion in many sectors.

Digital industry, European Digital Single Market, Digital Innovation Hubs, SMEs

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Point 5

Skills skills skills

10% is the average by which wages in the metal,

%

10% is the average by which wages in the metal, engineering and technology-based industries exceed comparable sectors. The Tech & Industry sector provides qualitative and well paid jobs.

EU and Member States must urgently take action to match training schemes with the digital transformation.

The skills gap needs to be addressed at national level and supported EU level. Funds need to be set aside to help education and training systems adapt to technological change.

We urge Member States to introduce digital learning from an early age and create a mindset where continuous training is a normal thing to do. The EU must create the right conditions and support investment in digital, entrepreneurial and soft skills. Reducing talent waste also requires digital-competent teachers.

Ceemet supports the Commissions’ objective of making Vocational Education and Training (VET) a first-class option for learners that leads to quality employment. This will help companies cope with the major technological changes, in order to remain competitive and continue providing quality jobs.

Skills, digital transformation, VET, education, entrepreneurship, women in tech, digitalisation

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Point 6

Agile labour markets

The European tech and industry sector created 1.25 million new and qualitative jobs

Million

The European tech and industry sector created 1.25 million new and qualitative jobs between 2013 and 2017. This figure could increase in the coming years with the right-skilled people.

Agile labour markets should be the preferred political choice. Good regulation is part of the solution.

EU legislators must be open to agile labour markets that allow employers and employees to shape work 4.0. The EU must provide the right framework conditions that reflect changing realities and offer room for manoeuvre, instead of developing new and unfit regulations, in order to keep pace with societal and technological changes. Evidence shows that the introduction of new technologies in the workplace in those countries with overly strict employment legislation, tends to negatively impact employment.

Regulation is part of the solution. Many tech start-ups develop innovative solutions for economic, societal or environmental issues of the 21st century. The EU has to welcome companies and particularly start-ups. Therefore, the right framework conditions should also be put in place to help them grow and become competitive, so that they continue to provide quality jobs.

Supporting entrepreneurship has a significant societal pay off. Agile labour markets are more resilient and more inclusive. They allow for necessary adjustments due to economic and technological changes, and bring opportunities, particularly for those who have difficulties finding a job. Agile labour markets should be the preferred (political) choice.

Agile labour market, NWOW, start-ups, future of work

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Point 7

Social partners make the difference

More than 40% of the world’s social spending occurs in the 28 Member States of the EU

%

More than 40% of the world’s social spending occurs in the 28 Member States of the EU. Supporting the EU’s industrial base is a precondition for remaining the most social region in the world.

Policy-makers should put an end to their plans for interfering directly or indirectly in core social partner issues.

Industrial relations have evolved differently in the various national economic, political, social and cultural environments in Europe. There cannot be a single EU model. In the majority of cases, Collective Bargaining (CB) systems play a prominent role in determining tailor-made working and employment conditions, including pay.

The emergence of the platform economy raises questions about the relevance of traditional industrial relations and CB systems. A big challenge for social partners is to adapt their business model to this new reality. This is already underway.

Policy-makers should therefore withdraw their plans for interfering directly or indirectly in core social partner issues, such as via the European Semester or deepening EMU. EU-level sectoral social dialogue contributes to improving the business and social environment. The objective is to promote competitiveness, with sustainable and high-quality jobs in European industry. Representative and mandated social partners have to be consulted in good time on any Commission proposal in the field of social policy. The method of consulting stakeholders at EU-level has to become non-discretionary and better coordinated.

Social partners, Collective Bargaining, social dialogue

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Point 8

Investment in tech & industry

Billon

€ 90 billion is the all-time high being invested by the European tech and industry sector in innovation, in order to find sustainable solutions in areas such as digitalisation and the world of work.

It is time to set up a single coordinated digitalisation investment programme.

Industrial relations have evolved differently in the various national economic, political, social and cultural environments in Europe. There cannot be a single EU model. In the majority of cases, Collective Bargaining (CB) systems play a prominent role in determining tailor-made working and employment conditions, including pay.

The emergence of the platform economy raises questions about the relevance of traditional industrial relations and CB systems. A big challenge for social partners is to adapt their business model to this new reality. This is already underway.

Policy-makers should therefore withdraw their plans for interfering directly or indirectly in core social partner issues, such as via the European Semester or deepening EMU. EU-level sectoral social dialogue contributes to improving the business and social environment. The objective is to promote competitiveness, with sustainable and high-quality jobs in European industry. Representative and mandated social partners have to be consulted in good time on any Commission proposal in the field of social policy. The method of consulting stakeholders at EU-level has to become non-discretionary and better coordinated.

Investments, digitalisation, EU funding programme, SMEs, one-stop shop

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Point 9

Global trade & Brexit

Europe Icon

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39% of the export of manufactured goods by Ceemet sector companies go outside the EU. It underlines the importance of the EU as a trading block.

The EU must overcome purely national and regional interests, and use its power to shape and promote frictionless trade with our key partners, and avoid tariff and non-tariff barriers to the movement of goods and services.

The EU is a world powerhouse in trade and a first mover on globalisation. Free trade and open markets have indeed been key drivers of the prosperity which we all enjoy. In a challenging global environment of increased nationalism and protectionism, the EU must continue to strive for new types of international trade agreements, while protecting our existing trade relations and national social standards.

In this context, we must maintain free and frictionless trade with one of our key trading partners, the UK, both during the negotiations and after the conclusion of the Brexit process. Tech & industry companies need certainty in order to plan their business decisions. Post-Brexit, we must ensure a level playing field between the EU27 and the UK. This includes a single regulatory environment, supported by mutual recognition and regulatory cooperation, with a mechanism to avoid regulatory divergence.

Moreover, in view of on-going shifts of international economic and geopolitical powers, Europe as the biggest global trading block has to speak with one voice. This shapes in a balanced way the new types of international trade agreements with the US, China and other trading partners.

Brexit, free trade, tariff, Single Market, EU27

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Point 10

Consult industry

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49% of all employees in the manufacturing sector, or 17 million, work in the Tech & Industry sector. The same figure stands for the additional jobs that are indirectly nurtured by those.

The EU must consult industry in order to design informed solutions to economic, societal and environmental challenges.

An internationally competitive industry is at the heart of Europe’s progress and wealth creation. It therefore also helps sustain high levels of social spending in the EU. Consequently, there is an obvious interest in establishing a process of regular and meaningful facts-based consultation with industry. Through such consultation, politicians will be able to make informed and proportionate decisions that lead to fit-for-future regulation.

Consultation with industry should become a natural reflex for any politician. This serves the purpose of finding solutions for problems of the real economy and society.

With a scale of more than 200,000 companies, of which the majority are small- and medium-sized, Ceemet and its membership are the interface for sharing facts-based and legally solid industry intelligence. We are best placed to offer solid, and as necessary critical, views to all political stakeholders, at local, regional, national and European levels.

Consultation with industry, SMEs, Ceemet

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