BusinessEurope Headlines No. 2022-18
Macroeconomic Dialogue: EU economy entering difficult phase
Higher global prices for energy, raw materials and food are all driving EU inflation and putting pressure on businesses and households alike. As a net importer of energy, we cannot escape the fact that higher global energy prices will tend to lower real incomes in the EU. In this context, social partners need to engage responsibly in collective bargaining on wages and help ensure that temporary price increases do not induce rising inflation expectations and in turn a damaging wage-price spiral, that would risk weakening medium-term growth and employment prospects. This was the key-message from BusinessEurope Director General Markus J. Beyrer at the Macroeconomic Dialogue, which drew together on 23 May social partners and European institutions. The President of the European Central Bank Christine Lagarde, the President of the Eurogroup Paschal Donohoe, and the European Commission Executive Vice-President Valdis Dombrovskis also participated in the exchange about developments and challenges facing the European economy. Beyrer noted that in exceptional times, it is necessary to suspend the rules of the Stability and Growth Pact. At the same time it will be important not to unduly delay the strengthening of public finances. The current situation also reinforces the importance of making best use of the EU’s Recovery and Resilience Facility to drive productive investment and reform, Beyrer stressed.
Contact: Pieter Baert
Better cooperation between academia and industry is a must
“If Europe wants to become an innovation leader, we need its universities and companies to cooperate better”, highlighted BusinessEurope Deputy Director General, Alexandre Affre, at the LERU’s 20th Anniversary Conference on 20 May. “The complexity of today’s challenges, going from climate change to aging of population, requires more inter-sectoral discussions than we were used to in the past”, he added. In the past years BusinessEurope has been calling for inter-sectoral mobility and enhanced universities’ value creation to support EU innovation. “The good news is that a lot is already happening on the ground, but we can do even better”, Affre suggested. One concrete solution is to establish regulatory sandboxes, which are tools that support innovation-friendly and up-to-date legislation. The reason why regulatory sandboxes work, he explained, is that they bring policy makers and different stakeholders together, and this shall include both industry and academia. “This is the best way to support inter-sectoral cooperation, and ultimately to innovate and create societal and economic value”, Affre concluded.
Contact: Carolina Vigo
Up and re-skilling through stronger links between employers and universities
Enhancing cooperation between employers and universities of applied sciences has an important role to play in fostering up and re-skilling and is especially important in developing skills for the digital and green transitions. Employers identify a strong need for workers with subject specific and transversal skills, especially in relation to digital and STEM skills (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math), which are also vital for the adaptation of our economies to greening. These were the key messages given by Maxime Cerutti, BusinessEurope Director of Social Affairs, during the annual conference of the European Association of Institutions in Higher Education (EURASHE) on 23 May. Providing more opportunities for practical work experience within higher education is also vital and should go hand in hand with enhancing the role of short cycle courses and diplomas, as well as micro-credentials, as part of improved higher education approaches to lifelong learning.
Contact: Robert Plummer
- 3 June: BusinessEurope Council of Presidents
- 8-9 June: Reuters Event: Responsible Business Europe 2022
- 12-15 June: Twelfth WTO Ministerial Conference (MC12)
- 15-16 June: POLITICO Live’s Competitive Europe Summit 2022
- 26-28 June: G7 Germany 2022
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