MEPs highlight importance of energy efficiency, critical raw materials, public procurement and skills


In a resolution adopted on 16th February, in response to the Commission’s “Green Deal Industrial Plan”, the members of the European Parliament (MEPs) welcome the plan but call, among other points, on the Commission to work on plans to redeploy, relocate and re-shore industries in Europe.

They also stress the importance of enhancing the EU’s manufacturing strength in strategic technologies like solar energy, heat pumps, or “prefabricated sustainable building materials“, and highlight the importance of secure access to critical raw materials to achieve the EU’s ecological transformation.

In addition, the Parliament underlines the importance of the Commission fully developing the sectoral Transition Pathways, “setting out the actions and support measures needed to ensure all sectors maintain their competitiveness, while decarbonising in order to contribute to the Union’s climate and Green Deal objectives“.

Regarding public procurement, MEPs call on the Commission to ensure that the Member States should unleash the full potential of the existing green public procurement instruments. They also urge the Commission to develop policy solutions to encourage more sustainable procurement.

Finally, regarding skills, the Parliament highlights the importance of access to training and the reskilling of workers in industries and sectors “that need to undergo fundamental changes with a view to a green and digital transition“. In this regard, it welcomes the contribution of the plan to delivering a highly skilled workforce for European industry by strengthening the relevance of skills, using local Pacts for Skills, while supporting the creation of one-stop shops and local hubs for skills development.



Posting of workers – Kick-off of a new EU-funded project


FIEC participated in the kick-off meeting of a new EU-funded project called “Posting of workers: strengthening and deepening transnational cooperation” which was held on 14th February in Brussels at the premises of the Belgian Federal Public Service (Employment, Labour and Social Dialogue Unit).
The main objective of the project is to strengthen and intensify transnational cooperation between public authorities (labour inspection, social security, tax administration) and social partners at national level for a better effectiveness of legal framework relating to posting workers. During a 18-month period, the partners will focus on the following activities:
  • deployment of operational cooperation plans aimed at guaranteeing posted workers’ rights.
  • case studies identifying the obstacles and challenges related to posting workers.
  • sharing and dissemination of know-how at the transnational level.
The project brings together partners from 16 EU Member States: labour authorities, trade unions, NGOs representing posted workers and European social partners.

ELA work programme 2023 – construction in the spotlight

As announced in previous editions of this newsletter, the 2023 Work Programme of the European Labour Authority (ELA) confirms the strong focus put on the construction sector.Concerning the topics on the radar, the ELA wants to focus on issues related to the posting of workers, including the presence of third country nationals, subcontracting chains, undeclared work, social security aspects, as well as the need to improve information and communication to workers and companies as regards the legal framework.

Preparatory works have started and both FIEC and EFBWW, as EU sectoral social partners, together with their respective affiliates, are actively involved in the various activities.



FIEC at the Recovery Construction Forum in Warsaw

On 15th February 2023, the Confederation of Builders of Ukraine (CBU) co-organised the Recovery Construction Forum in Warsaw. This event was supported by FIEC, represented in discussions by Philip Crampton, FIEC President, and Kjetil Tonning, Honorary President.In addition to representatives from the construction sector, the conference also brought together State representatives from Ukraine and certain EU Member States, European and international donors and other stakeholders.

During the conference, FIEC made clear that it stands behind its Ukrainian member CBU and the people of Ukraine and will provide as much assistance as possible in both the short term and in the preparation of the reconstruction phase.



European Commission consults on improving learning mobility in Europe

On 8th February, the European Commission launched a public consultation on the future of cross-border mobility for learning purposes. Although this is one of the cornerstones of the European education area, only 15% of young people have undertaken training in another EU country.
The aim of this consultation is to ask stakeholders from all educational sectors (i.e. apprentices and vocational training) about the main obstacles to mobility.
This feedback will feed into the update of the EU Mobility Framework, planned for Q3 2023. The consultation will be open for 12 weeks.