(12 Februry 2020) The European Commission is preparing its Industrial Policy. It needs to have a substantial social pillar and involve the trade unions. This was the message a group of union leaders brought to EU Commissioner Breton. He is coordinating the policy. He agreed with the unions that the social partners need to be involved in the governance and that no workers should be left behind. The union group stressed that the European Union needs a set of policies that promotes the development of industries to respond to the demand of the Green deal and the need to have a circular economy while creating employment and ensuring workers have quality jobs. The EPSU General Secretary stressed the importance of Public Services from ministries to local governments and agencies, from infrastructures to the role of public companies. Public procurement is an important tool as are public investments to help ensure the shift and realise the ambitions. Without recognizing and supporting the role of public services, the industrial policy will fail.
The EU industrial policy will also cover the pharmaceutical sector (medicines and devices) as well as health (data, artificial intelligence and services.) The EPSU representative stressed the importance of secure and public digital services including clouds and networks. We do not want our most valuable personal and public data to end up in the hands of commercial companies out to put profits before people.
The EPSU General Secretary, IndustriAll-Europe General Secretary Luc Triangle and ETUC Confederal Secretary Isabell Schömann participated in the meeting. The meeting took place 10 February 2020.