At the Tripartite Social Summit led by Croatian Prime Minister Plenkovic Ceemet President and Managing Director of a 3rd generation family owned company, Diego Andreis, spoke as one of the over 200,000 companies Ceemet represents in the manufacturing and tech industries which is the biggest industrial sector in Europe.
Many of the companies are suffering from the COVID-19 impact, with 6 million workers on short time work and an estimated 1 million jobs lost until the end of 2021.
In the time that he was granted, he called the leaders present Commission von der Leyen, Council President Michel and Prime Minister Plenkovic from the Croation Presidency to move forward in a determined and well-coordinated way.
Investments towards a modern, competitive and R&D based industry are for the future of the European project we all wish for and how people and right skilling are at the heart of such future.
The recovery and resilience plans that are on the table
There are parallels in the key areas identified in the Next Generation EU proposal and Ceemet’s Recovery plan, which as most urgent measure, calls for an extraordinary stimulation of demand. The main areas with likewise proposals are:
- Making EU fit for the future and a genuine global player requires an innovative and competitive industry. A swiftly operational robust Recovery Fund alongside the next MFF is essential. Companies including SMEs and a vibrant start-up scene, need access to finance and the right framework conditions for doing business. This includes a true Digital Single Market, which supports the required shifts in labour markets.
- The EU should encourage rather than stifle efforts to adapt national labour markets to the new reality. Agile labour markets do facilitate the uptake of digitalisation and thus the creation of good jobs for a competitive industry.
- Permanent right-skilling is not a choice. The time for changing our mindset is here and the EU should support a streamlined exchange of good practice across the entire EU and add further budget for education and training.
Good start, don’t lose the drive
Ceemet’s President thanked the leaders and acknowledged the tremendous ongoing efforts at all levels to relaunch growth and employment.
Yet, much more needs to be done! Political leaders must show responsibility and swiftly adopt a robust Recovery Fund and MFF. That money must be spent right, to turn the challenges of COVID-19 into opportunities for a resilient, strong Europe that shapes the new normal.
To succeed on that, industry must be consulted and the role of autonomous social dialogue be promoted and respected, for example when it comes to wage setting. During the crisis, representative and mandated social partners stood together to make a difference contributing to give companies and workers a future.