BusinessEurope Headlines No. 2018-03
Talks with French President Emmanuel Macron
“After five years of growth, we are now in a period of very strong post-crisis recovery, and we are witnessing an overall positive political situation in Europe. What is sure is that if we want this positive trend to last and consolidate we should not be lulled into complacency. On the contrary, we should use this window of opportunity created by favourable economic and political conditions to make further reforms, strengthen the EU’s capacity to face bad economic weather in the future and mobilise in strategic areas such as the common trade policy, the single market and industrial policy”. This was the core message President Emma Marcegaglia voiced during talks at the official dinner offered by the President of the French Republic Emmanuel Macron during the French International Business Summit “Choose France!” held on 22 January 2018 at the Château de Versailles.
Contact: Daniele Olivieri
A trade war is not the answer to the challenges of globalisation
We have an international order, and not only on trade, that is based on multilateralism. It is based on the assumption that countries will respect the rules and institutions that they helped to create. We have all benefited from trade liberalisation and it is important that we stay committed to the world trading system. There are losers of globalisation and technological developments and we need to find solutions for them. But it is not by resorting to protectionism or by imposing unilateral measures that limit imports that a solution will be found. On the contrary, this kind of measures risk creating a flaw in the system that might hit back at those that are already suffering the most. This was the core message conveyed by BusinessEurope President Marcegaglia, speaking at the World Economic Forum on 24 January 2018 in a session focusing on trade, with the Secretary of Commerce of the United States Wilbur L. Ross and the Director General of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) Roberto Azevedo. Photo album.
Contact: Eleonora Catella
FDI screening – balancing openness with security concerns
The Committee on International Trade in the European Parliament organised a Public Hearing on the issue of screening of foreign investment in the EU on 23 January 2018. Representing BusinessEurope, International Relations Director Luisa Santos shared the views of business on the recent proposal of the European Commission to set up a framework of screening of foreign direct investment (FDI) into the EU. The proposal is an effort to address concerns regarding the increased volume of investments in areas that might be critical for the EU and its members security and public order. While respecting subsidiarity and the EU international obligations, it intends to set basic principles that Member States should follow if they decide to create a screening mechanism, therefore bringing more clarity and legal certainty to the system. However, the proposal raises a number of questions on its practical implementation, especially with regards to the cooperation mechanism and the exchange of information among Member States and the European Commission. How can we ensure that all Member States (those that have a national screening mechanism and those that do not) will provide high-quality information? How can potential fragmentations in the implementation of the Regulation be avoided? How commercially sensitive information can be better safeguarded? BusinessEurope follows closely the legislative process and is developing its position on the matter.
Contact: Sofia Bournou
BusinessEurope debates industrial policy with Council Competitiveness Working Party
It is fundamental to continue acknowledging and defending the need for a renewed EU industrial strategy and not let this momentum go dormant again. This topic must also become an integral part of the Future of Europe debate and the next Multiannual Financial Framework, alongside other EU priorities. This was the key message delivered by Joana Valente, Senior Adviser and Strategy Coordinator at BusinessEurope, during a Council Competitiveness Working Party on the 24 January 2018. The discussion also covered more detailed aspects of a long-term vision for Europe, including the need for new strategic headline indicators.
Contact: Joana Valente
10th International Cybersecurity Conference
BusinessEurope opened and chaired a panel discussion at the 10th Annual International Cybersecurity Conference in Lille on the Cybersecurity Act on 23 January 2018. Digital Economy Advisor, Patrick Grant, introduced the session by stating that industry supports the Commission's initiative to deploy a cybersecurity certification scheme in order to encourage all stakeholders in the value chain to take cybersecurity seriously. At the same time, providers and users of cybersecurity technologies need assurance that they will be consulted early in the scheme development process. A wider strategy and focus should also be placed on threats posed by industrial espionage and intellectual property theft. Further information on the panel can be found here and BusinessEurope's position here.
Contact: Patrick Grant
- 26 January: EU industrial strategy: what headline indicators for a long-term vision?, Brussels
- 21 February: Company law package
- 22-23 February: Second European Industry Day
- 23 February: Informal meeting of Heads of State or Government
- 28 February: European Semester Winter Package