SGIs Network Joint Declaration for the Tripartite Social Summit
On the occasion of the Tripartite Social Summit of 22 March 2023, the SGIs Network, which gathers associations representing providers and employers of services of general interest (SGIs) and public services including the Community of European Railway and Infrastructure Companies (CER), presented and issued a joint declaration underlining some critical messages for consolidating the EU Single Market, focusing on its green and fair dimensions. Calling for action these include, amongst others.
Ensure the success of a fair green transition
SGI providers are committed to promoting sustainable and environmentally friendly services. Rising energy prices have not only led to increasing energy bills for all SGIs, ranging from public transport to postal services, but created market distortions where green electricity is more expensive than that generated by fossil fuels, which is contrary to the goals of the European Green Deal. Every measurement taken when revising the Electricity Market Design (EMD) must address the security of supply in the energy sector so as not to harm consumers and the economy across the European Union.
Avoid dominance of digital platforms
The SGI Network raises awareness of the impact that large digital platforms have on SGI providers in terms of additional costs and limiting access to valuable data. A dominant position could lead to an increase of the profits of digital platforms at the expense of public service budget due to rising costs. In addition, limits on data access will prevent SGI providers to better understand customer needs, trends and adapt the services provided accordingly. As such, it is critical to ensure a level-playing field between platforms and SGIs to provide improved services as our societies become more digitalised.
Ensure easy and stable access to EU funds and financing
With growing national debts and budget cuts, EU funds and financing are critical for SGI providers. The SGI Network calls for a quicker implementation of all investments and reforms pledged, particularly in the new frame of the recently approved RePowerEU.
Address skills mismatches and labour shortages
The ability of SGI providers to digitalise, decarbonise and fulfil their mission is threatened by significant staff and skills shortages. In the context of the EU Year of Skills, the SGI Network call on the Commission and Member States to emphasize improving the interconnection between the labour market and education and training while developing quality frameworks for skills forecast, intelligence and development.