Pact for Skills Forum
21-22 March: 
Unlocking the skills potential across Europe

The Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion (DG EMPL) of the European Commission is organising the Pact for Skills Forum on 21-22 March 2024 in Brussels and online.The Forum will provide a platform for stakeholders, including policy makers and practitioners, to exchange insights on up-skilling and re-skilling efforts, with a particular focus on regional initiatives. Participants will be encouraged to share experiences, ideas and recommendations on how to improve the impact of the Pact for Skills.



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The MOBICCON-PRO project, funded under the Horizon Europe programme, aims to develop and demonstrate innovative circular solutions to recover resources from construction and demolition waste (CDW) and to decrease consumption of raw construction materials.You can subscribe now to the project Newsletter via this link, in order to stay updated about MOBICCON-PRO news and developments.



Bouw Forum Construction 2024 – “Grand Debat Electoral”

On 23 February, Thomas Scorier and Niko Demeester, respectively President and CEO of our Belgian member federation Embuild, took part as speakers in the “Grand Debat Electoral“, in the context of the Bouw Forum Construction, the key information and networking event for construction professionals. Every year, about 800 contractors and installers attend this largest event in Belgium for the sector.The 2024 edition of the Forum marked a considerable success with its “great debate”, a broader discussion focused on the federal, regional and European Elections to be held in Belgium on 9 June.

In brief, the debates focused on :

  1. Sustainable and affordable housing : highlighting the needs for 220.000 new housings by 2030 and for speeding up the renovation of buildings, among others by providing incentives to citizens; the request to extend the scope of a reduced VAT at 6%.
  2. The need to increase public investments for new infrastructures (schools, healthcare, transports and especially train). In view of the forthcoming elections Embuild advocates an ambitious overall investment standard for the whole of Belgium of at least 4% of GDP in 2029 and 5% of GDP in 2034.
  3. The need for creating attractive and exciting job, in order to attract more workers and more women in the sector.

4 March: FIEC to speak at SolarPower Summit 2024

FIEC has been invited to speak in a panel discussion on Day 1 during the forthcoming SolarPower Summit to be held on 4 and 5 March in Brussels. Our federation will be represented by Nicolas Randria, Secretary General of the French Association of PV Professionals (a member of FIEC’s French member Fédération Française du Bâtiment – FFB).

The panel discussion will gather speakers from the industry, the European Commission and the media. The Summit will be attended by high-level industry and political representatives, including European Commission’s Executive Vice President for the Green Deal, Maros Sefcovic, and the EU Commissioner for Energy, Kadri Simson.



EU agrees on new Air Quality Directives


On 20 February, EU lawmakers reached an agreement on the new Air Quality Directives.

The new rules set stricter limit and target values for 2030 compared to the current rules for several pollutants, including particulate matter (PM2.5, PM10), NO2 (nitrogen dioxide) and SO2 (sulphur dioxide).

In cases where a limit or target value is exceeded, or there is a real risk that the alert or information thresholds for certain pollutants will be exceeded, the text requires Member States to draw up an air quality roadmap before the deadline if, between 2026 and 2029, the level of pollutants exceeds the limit or target value to be attained by 2030.

The text also requires EU countries to adopt short-term action plans, setting out emergency measures (e.g. traffic restrictions, suspension of construction works) to reduce the immediate risk to human health in areas where the alert thresholds are exceeded.



German Liberals call to renegotiate EU Due Diligence Directive

German liberals – one of the parties making up the German government – have called for a resumption of negotiations on the EU’s Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive (CSDDD) after it was removed from the agenda of the Committee of Permanent Representatives I (COREPER I in the EU Council), citing shortcomings in the December agreement. The CSDDD aims to hold companies accountable for abuses in value chains, but controversy led to the vote being postponed without a date being set.

German liberals criticised the unclear majority situation and accused the Spanish EU Presidency of leaving critical issues unresolved. The postponement is seen as an opportunity for improvement, emphasising the need for a trilogue outcome with majority support. Their focus on reducing EU bureaucracy raises suspicions of potential rejection, as concerns and opposition led to the de facto postponement of the vote.


FIEC Manifesto for EU Elections: now available in Finnish, German and Romanian

We are pleased to inform that the FIEC Manifesto for the European Elections is available online in 3 additional language versions (for a total of 10, including English).

The new 3 languages are:

  • German
  • Romanian
  • Finnish

Entitled “Building a resilient and sustainable Europe together“, the full complete version of this publication is online. Ahead of the European Elections that will take place on 6-9 June 2024, FIEC’s 10 key messages to the candidates are set out to deliver our vision for the future of construction in Europe.

Discover what matters for the sector over the next 5 years. An e-leaflet (Manifesto ‘in brief’) is also available. You can access the different linguistic versions from the drop-down menu on the Home Page of the Manifesto.



FIEC VP Paseri speaks at the EP Intergroup on “Sustainable long-term investments”

On 5 March, FIEC Vice-President, Jean Pierre Paseri, will speak in the event on “Infrastructure Maintenance and the Decarbonisation Challenge“, hosted by the European Parliament Intergroup on Sustainable, Long-term Investment and Competitive European Industry.

Sustainability, circularity, resilience and adaptation to climate change have become integral to any construction project. Reducing greenhouse gases and saving energy by optimising construction processes and products has become a key issue. The road industry worldwide is reducing the need for raw materials, energy consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Maintenance can also have a direct impact on reducing greenhouse gases and saving energy in road transport and vehicle traffic“, the invitation reads.

The event will bring together representatives of the European Commission, the road construction sector and the financial sector. Join us there!