On 27 October 2020, Spanish Member of the European Parliament (MEP) Javi López of the Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament posed a written parliamentary question to the European Commission:
“TE Connectivity has announced plans to close its plant in Montcada i Reixac, with the loss of 248 jobs. The company, which specialises in automotive components, submitted its second labour force adjustment plan in the last year and a half and is now preparing to close the plant.
This new closure shows the extent of the crisis facing the automotive sector, an industry which is considered a priority sector within the EU.
1. How does the Commission plan to provide the EU with a genuine industrial policy that protects strategic industries such as the automotive sector? What measures will the Commission take to boost employment?
2. Does the Commission intend to instigate any plan of action to reverse these closures and the collective redundancies of workers that exacerbate unemployment problems in more industrialised regions?”
On 29 January 2021, Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton responded on behalf of the European Commission stating: “On 10 March 2020, the Commission adopted a new Industrial Strategy for Europe to help Europe’s industry lead the green and digital transformations, and driving Europe’s global competitiveness and its strategic autonomy. The Commission will update the Industrial Strategy in the first half of 2021.
Mobility, transport and automotive is one of the industrial ecosystems that has been heavily hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Recovery Plan will help repair the economic and social damage brought by the COVID‐19 pandemic, in particular by promoting public investment and key structural reforms in the Member States via the key instrument of the Recovery and Resilience Facility, supporting people to stay in work and creating new jobs within the twin green and digital transitions. Funds under the Recovery and Resilience Facility will benefit Member States, not directly private companies.
To be eligible for funding under the Facility, Member States need to prepare national Recovery and Resilience Plans, outlining a coherent package of investment and reform initiatives.
Following the outbreak of the pandemic, the Commission proposed a new instrument for temporary Support to mitigate Unemployment Risk in an Emergency (SURE) adopted in May 2020.
In addition, the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) can provide assistance to permanently dismissed workers to help them find new employment, in accordance with the criteria defined in the EGF Regulation. Workers affected by restructuring may also qualify for retraining under the European Social Fund.”
Photo Credit : https://pixabay.com/photos/production-factory-cars-auto-parts-4460363/