3rd meeting of the High Level Roundtable on the Future of the European Steel Industry: opening by Antonio Tajani
Type: Complete speech
End production: 12/02/2013 First transmission: 12/02/2013
On 12 February 2013, Antonio Tajani, Vice-President of the EC in charge of Industry and Entrepreneurship, gave an opening speech at the third meeting of the High Level Round table on the Future of the European Steel Industry. On this occasion, he spoke about the situation in France and Belgium with ArcelorMittal.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Soundbite by Antonio Tajani, Vice-President of the EC in charge of Industry and Entrepreneurship, (in ENGLISH): Good morning everybody, thank you for coming at this meeting, the last meeting, our round table in Brussels.
||Soundbite by Antonio Tajani (in SPANISH) giving some welcoming words and thanking the interpreters for their work
||Soundbite by Antonio Tajani (in FRENCH) saying that he will start in French as there is a very serious problem regarding work in Belgium and France with ArcelorMittal.
First, he wants to thank the representatives of the European Parliament, the delegations of EUROFER, businesses and industrial delegations, representatives of trade unions, representatives of the Member States that are strongly committed to this policy to try to defend steel sectors. Today's meeting is very important, first of all, to try to give answers to citizens. There are problems of unemployment in the European steel industry, not only in France but also in Belgium and Italy. Problems are different but there is always the risk to thousands of workers losing their job and the purpose of his work as Commissioner in charge of industry, market is not the final goal, the aim is social policy. There is no work if there is no industry. If there is not a strong market, if there are not Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). The European Commission approved a text for the re-industrialisation of the European Union and the goal is to have 20% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) coming from industry. There is no Europe if no steel. Steel is the heart of the foundation of the European Union, a key industry for Europe in the history of Europe, yesterday and today but also tomorrow. There is no Europe if no steel. And in order to fight for the re-industrialisation of the European Union, a modern, competitive, green industry, it is necessary to defend steel. Everything about green economy is built thanks to the steel. And the fight against climate change is connected with the protection of steel industry because if industries are forced to leave Europe and relocate, there will be two negative results, industries closures and job losses as well as a strengthening of climate change because companies will go in countries where there is no rule against climate change. That is why he is absolutely convinced that they must fight for the steel industry. In the policy of re-industrialisation of the European Union, they have identified six major sectors. Both are crucial for steel: the automotive and construction are the two most important customers in the steel sector. The crisis kicked very hard in the steel industry and in July 2012, they had a meeting in Strasbourg with unions to discuss the issue of ArcelorMittal but unfortunately ArcelorMittal is not the only problem in Europe. There are problems throughout Europe. That is why he decided to organise the round table and he want to thank all who have worked to prepare the documents they will approve today. It will be the basis to prepare, before the summer, the action plan of the European Commission for this sector and before explaining the strategy, he wants to ask ArcelorMittal to refer the decision to close factories until, at least, the approval of the text of the action plan of the European Commission. He is convinced they can give an answer to try to defend steel industry in Europe. There will also be the opportunity to have a task force to check what happens. ArcelorMittal may ask it and also the Belgian, French or Luxembourgish government to see if there is the possibility to do positive things in order to defend the factories in this sector in Europe. I will continue in my mother tongue.
||Soundbite by Antonio Tajani (in ITALIAN) giving an opening speech at the third meeting of the High Level Round Table on the Future of the European Steel Industry