EU Tripartite Social Summit


On 16th October, leaders of European employee and employer (i.e. BUSINESSEUROPE) organisations, the European Commission, the European Council, the EU Heads of State or Government, and Employment and Social Affairs Ministers from the countries holding the current and incoming Presidencies of the EU Council held an exchange of views.
The main topic of this meeting was “Progressing on the social and economic dimensions for a competitive, fair and sustainable Europe: The role of social partners and social dialogue”.
The following issues were more specifically targeted: a just transition to a climate-neutral economy; investing in skills and improving access to adult training; and designing an industrial policy fit for the future.
Amongst others, discussions concentrated very much on the problematic of retraining and upskilling workers, to match skills and labour the market needs as much as possible.



Reflection Day on Late Payment


On 21 October the European Commission organised a Reflection Day on Late Payment to gather information by business representatives and the Member States on the implementation of the current legislation. The Directive on combating late payment in commercial transactions was adopted in 2011 and transposed into national law in 2013. Several studies conducted since revealed that the impact of the Directive has been limited so far.
The discussions during the Reflection Day confirmed that late payment is still a huge problem in business-to-business transactions. However, public authorities often do not pay on time, which triggers a “snowball effect” in the entire value chain of public works. A positive example is Ireland where public authorities are obliged to pay businesses within 15 days. Around 90% of authorities comply with this obligation. The entirety of payments is made after 30 days. FIEC strongly advocates for stricter rules for public authorities due to their dominant market position and their regular access to finance.
Currently, the European Commission is still in the phase of collecting information before deciding on how to proceed. Stakeholders are warmly invited to provide relevant input to the Commission.


DigiPLACE survey: uptake of digital technologies

The DigiPLACE project has launched a survey to determine the extent to which digital technologies are being used in the EU construction sector. DigiPLACE is an EU funded project to create a roadmap for a digital platform for the construction industry in Europe.  FIEC is a partner in the project, which recently started.  Part of the early work is to establish an overview of where the industry is now in terms of digitalisation and this is the reason for the survey.  If you would like to take part, you can click on the link below.


“Blueprint” project website now available

The “Blueprint” project is a 4-years project co-financed by the ERASMUS+ programme aiming at setting up a long term alliance  between stakeholders for better anticipation of the skills needs in the construction industry and a regular adaptation of the training schemes.
The project is coordinated by the Spanish “Fundación Laboral de la Construcción” and gathers 24 partners, including FIEC, from 12 different countries.
The second partners’ meeting took place last week in Rome (Italy) and on that occasion, the project’s website was presented. It will be filled-in with input and outcomes of the project as they will become available and it will be the starting point for setting the basis for a long-term alliance.
Currently, in many Member States construction companies cannot find workers with the needed skills and this situation hinders the competitiveness and the sustainability of the construction industry.