“A long-term strategy for Europe’s industrial future: from words to action” was presented on 21 January to high-level representatives of the EU institutions at an event hosted by the Croatian Presidency of the European Council and by Industry4Europe, a coalition of 153 industrial sectors. EPF was a co-sponsor of the event and a co-signatory of the Joint Paper. “From Words to Action” (https://www.industry4europe.eu/assets/Uploads/Publications/Industry4Europe_Joint-Paper_November-2019.pdf) makes the case for Industry in Europe on behalf of the 52 million citizens and their families, who benefit directly or indirectly from employment in the European industrial sector.
EPF welcomes the conclusions of the Joint Paper and the discussions held in Brussels, in particular:
Recognising the value of Circular Economy. Europe needs to adopt policies and regulatory frameworks that reduce barriers to reuse, repair and recycling, and which encourage circularity.
Sustainability is a global opportunity for Europe. Industrial strategy on sustainability must translate science into business opportunities. These must ensure sustainability for long time viability and decarbonisation to protect our climate. Innovation in industry can deliver this.
Level playing field in the EU market and globally. The alignment of sustainability with a competitive industry must be enabled through a level playing field across diverse economies. Harmonisation, not regionalism, should also be strongly encouraged allowing global champions to emerge.
EPF, an active participant in the Industry4Europe coalition, welcomes EU Commission President von der Leyen’s Green Deal growth strategy that recognises the need for a new European industrial policy based on the circular economy. EPF acknowledges the recommendation of high-level panellists at the Brussels event to communicate “From Words to Action” and the possibilities that industry offers as broadly as possible in order to help drive this change. With European wood-based panels being increasingly driven by innovation (already today ca. 50% of the wood resource comes from recovered wood or industrial by-products, effectively turning waste into product), EPF looks forward to playing a key role in the societal, environmental and economic transformation that is envisaged for Europe by the Green Deal.EPF, the European Panel Federation, has members in 25 EU countries and represents the manufacturers of particleboard, MDF, OSB, hardboard, softboard and plywood. The European wood-based panels industry has an annual turnover of about 22 billion euro, creates over 100,000 jobs directly and counts more than 5,000 enterprises in Europe.