Following her meeting with representatives of the CIF, West & Midlands region, Marian met with executives of the European Construction Industry Federation (FIEC) in Brussels. The FIEC represents the interest of the construction industry including Ireland’s CIF. Marian was neeting the lobby group to discuss a range of issues involved in current and proposed EU legislation.
She said; “At the meeting with the CIF Western and Midlands region representatives they outlined a number of issues, extending from access to finance, especially for regional operators to the thorny question of public procurement. At this session we agreed that a meeting with their European counterparts would be useful.
“At the Brussels meeting, which included FIEC director general Ulrich Paetzold, Sue Arundale, Director Technical and Environmental Affairs, Dominico Campogrande, Director Social Affairs and Christine Le Forrestier, Director Economic and Legal Affairs, we discussed the Construction 2020 Action Plan from the European Commission, the issue of investment at both European and National level, and how the Juncker Investment Plan might be of assistance. As part of the Juncker Investment Plan, the European Commission has set up the European Investment Project Portal which is a platform where EU based projects seeking external financing are given the opportunity to promote their projects to potential investors.
“Thus, this platform could have an important regional development dimension whereby Regional Authorities can list projects in the pipeline and promote them in the portal to seek investment. Regional Authorities can also combine regional funding with finance available from the European Investment Bank under the Juncker plan and this may also assist in the provision of finance for various projects.
“Other items discussed were the recycling of building materials and health issues surrounding the use of silica in the Construction Industry. The posting of workers legislation, which is very relevant to the Construction Industry throughout the EU, was also discussed.”