Resolution on the Industrial and Energy Policy in Europe

Industrial policy

Recalling that it is important:

- To maintain and increase the competitiveness of the European economy

- To maintain the European notion of the welfare state and to ensure that the benefits of globalisation are shared

Recognising that European workers cannot hope to compete with those in the developing world on wage costs alone, and so improving productivity in the future depends on better use of technology and a higher level of skills

Calls for European research programmes for technology, particularly in technologies that will reduce the environmental impact of economic activity

Calls for government at all levels, particularly regional level, to increase their investment in education and skills

Rejects the notion of “economic patriotism” on the part of member states of the European Union

Recognises that a new round of corporate cross-border consolidation within the EU is to be expected and welcomed

Calls for continued efforts to complete the single market, particularly in services


Recalling that

- The European Union born with the Treaty establishing the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) setting up an industrial policy in the coal and steel industries
- The ECSC raised resources to finance investment in these industries through taxation and the issue of union bonds
- The European Union has an economic constitution based on the internal market, the euro and the Stability and Growth Pact, allowing market forces to act at European level, but without the power to counteract market failures nor an educational and human resources strategy, so giving to European citizens the impression that Europe is no more than a liberalistic market
- Only with a European constitution, allowing the transformation of the European Commission into a true European government responsible to the European Parliament, would make possible the democratic control of the European economy

Considering that

- after two wars in the Middle East, tensions with Iran, splits between the Ukraine and Russia, increases in oil prices, etc
- with the increasing dependence on the international supply of energy, not only for Europe but also for the United States, China and India, energy is one of the main problems facing European countries in the next decades

Claims that:

- the European Union should be endowed with a single energy policy, through the transformation of EURATOM into a European Energy Authority with competences extended to oil, natural gas and promoting renewable energy and energy efficiency

Recalls that

- the Agency must promote payment for energy in euros, realise investment in the European energy transport network, and double the production of electricity from renewable energy resources by 2010
- the Agency should be able to negotiate with Russia and other members of the CIS, institutional agreements to manage energy production and transport on a continental basis
- the Agency must demand the inclusion of oil and natural gas within the competences of the WTO, so that energy problems can be discussed at the global level
- the Agency is a tool to which third countries could be associated
- the Agency, as with the ECSC, could provide its own financial resources through taxation and the issuing of union bonds

External policies

Recalling that it is important:

- To maintain the prosperity of the European Union
- To enable the world’s poor to overcome poverty through trade and development
- To reduce the present imbalances in the global market (e.g. the US trade deficit) without a global economic crash

Believes it is important to complete the Doha development round of WTO negotiations to maintain progress towards freer world trade

Advocates reforms of the WTO and other global financial institutions to reflect the changing balance of population and economic influence in the world and to increase their democratic accountability and legitimacy

Calls for a renewed framework for global macro-economic decisions and in particular for the management of exchange rates at the global level

Resolution carried overwhelmingly