ERJ staff report (PR)
Berlin – Europe' s association for rubber and plastics machinery makers Euromap and US plastics industry body the SPI have recently signed a declaration of intent on free trade within the machinery sector.
The associations aim to strengthen the competitive position of member companies within the global marketplace. With sales totalling €15 billion, the European and American plastics machinery markets currently account for 50 percent of the world market.
According to EUROMAP, the deal could safeguard around 65,000 jobs and create many more across the machinery-manufacturing sector in Europe and the US.
Harmonisation, it said, will also improve operating safety and simplify deliveries of machinery, which, in turn, will save time and effort and boost competitiveness.
"The TTIP (Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership) is a milestone in terms of cooperation in our sector, and this should have a very positive impact on our business relationships," said William Carteaux, president and CEO of SPI.
"TTIP presents an opportunity not a risk," Thorsten Kühmann, secretary general of Euromap added in a 24 Jun statement, urging politicians on both sides of the Atlantic to do more to promote TTIP among the population.
Both umbrella associations want greater consideration of the interests of the machinery manufacturing industry, which is largely made up of medium-sized enterprises. These companies, they argue, have been largely ignored, even though the sector represents 13 percent of total EU exports to the US.
EUROMAP estimates that the European plastics and rubber machinery manufacturing industry encompasses almost 3,700 companies with a combined annual turnover of more than €17 billion and about 100,000 employees. The national associations for Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey and the UK are all members of EUROMAP.