03 Sep 2012

An integrated industrial policy

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An integrated industrial policy

Statement of EU VicePresident Antonio Tajani on 31/08/2012 “Industry is at the heart of Europe and indispensable for finding solutions to the challenges of our society, today and in the future. Europe needs industry and industry needs Europe. We must tap into the full potential of the Single Market, its 500 million consumers and its 20 million entrepreneurs.”

In this era of intensifying globalization, the concept of national sectors and industries is obsolete. Coordinated European policy responses are needed. Europe also needs an approach that looks at the whole value chain, from infrastructure and raw materials to after-sales service. Promoting the creation and growth of small and medium-sized enterprises has to be at the core of EU industrial policy.

Moreover, the transition to a sustainable economy has to be seized as an opportunity to strengthen competitiveness. Only a European Industrial Policy targeting competitiveness and sustainability can muster the critical mass of change and coordination needed for success. There will be no sustainability without competitiveness, and there will be no long-lasting competitiveness without sustainability. And there will be none of them without a quantum leap in innovation!

Related policy areas

In short, the concept of an integrated industrial policy means that it encompasses a full range of EU policies such as competition, trade, innovation or energy since they all have an impact on the competitiveness of industry. In addition, the integrated policy puts on equal footing competitiveness and sustainability. Finally, the integrated approach emphasizes the need for cooperation and coordination of efforts between the European Commission and the Member States.

Living up to the ambitions of a strong, diversified and competitive industrial base in Europe requires mutually reinforcing policies. This concerns notably the flagship initiatives developed under the Europe 2020 strategy and strategies such as the one on the EU's Single Market, adopted on 27 October 2011. A special emphasis is also given to intellectual property rights whose protection is an important factor of success in the knowledge-based economy and which serve as incentive to invest in product and process innovation.

More info: EC Enterprise & Industry

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Pablo De Castro

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