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Activities report of the Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007


PREFACE

This report is made up of two parts. The first one corresponds to the activities performed during the period between July 8th, 2006 (General Assembly of Mouscron) and December 4th, 2006 (Extraordinary Assembly of Guimaraes). The action lines of this period have followed the proposals of the ACTE 2003-2006 Mandate Plan.

The second part informs about the activities performed since the Extraordinary Meeting of Guimaraes up to the General Assembly of Carpi (December 7th, 2007). This part reflects the new policy and governance of ACTE following the proposals of the ACTE 2007-2009 Mandate Plan, based on he reflection document "ACTE 2007-2013: a strategic proposal” which was approved by the Extraordinary Assembly of Guimaraes. PART I

1. Increasing the Association’s representativeness

The General Assembly of Mouscron approved the application of the following effective members to affiliate with the association:

Name member City of Krapina City of Zabok City of Pineda de Mar City of Rzgów

Country Croatia Croatia Spain Poland

Inhabitants 11,500 10,000 24,702 9,000

It should be noted that within the framework of the Varazdin Executive Committee of November 20th, 2005, the members visited the cities of Zabok and Krapina. During the Executive Committee meeting in Lodz in May 2006, the members of the Executive Committee held a meeting with the mayor of the city of Rzgów. Besides, the Executive Secretariat and particularly the former Executive Secretary, Teo Romero, have played a key role in incorporating the City of Pineda de Mar into our association.

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The General Assembly of Mouscron also approved the following requests for membership as adherent members:

Name of member Country LEITAT Technological Centre (Terrassa) Spain EEDRI – Entrepreneurship and Economic Poland Development Research Institute (Lodz)

As for those leaving our entity, the following effective members have stated their wish of not belonging to ACTE any more:

Name of member City of Piotrków Trybunalski City of Canet de Mar City of Aielo de Malferit

Country Poland Spain Spain

There are political and economic reasons for them to leave. The affiliation of the City of Piotrków Trybunalski was approved by the General Assembly of Igualada in 2005, but finally the mayor of this Polish city did not obtain the approval of the City Council. In case of the City of Canet de Mar and Aielo de Malferit, they left ACTE mainly because the textile and clothing industry disappeared in the territory. Overview of the members Effective members per country (as of 8 July 2006): Members per country

COUNTRY Spain Italy France Poland Croatia Belgium United Kingdom Portugal TOTAL

MEMBERS 28 18 4 4 3 2 1 1 61

Portugal

1

UK

1

Belgium

2

Croatia

3

Poland

4

France

4

Italy

18

Spain

28 0

5

10

15

Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

20

25

30

3


2. European lobbying

ACTE, as a network of local and regional European communities, needs visibility and presence before the European institutions and needs to discuss with them issues relevant to members. 

Active participation of ACTE in the High Level Group on Textiles and Clothing (HLG)

In the period elapsing between the General Assembly of Mouscron (July 2006) and the Extraordinary Assembly of Guimaraes (December 2006), the scope of action of ACTE at the European level was, essentially, the HLG. It should be remembered that the HLG was set up by the European Commission in 2003 to identify the problems of the textile and clothing industry and to put forward concrete measures to solve them. The group comprises the governments of Portugal, Germany, Greece, France and Italy, members of the European Commission and the European Parliament, unions, representatives of the industry and ACTE. Our association was encouraged to participate in this group as representative of the European textile territories.

The HLG is not a permanent institution, but a group limited in time. The group tasks ended on September 18th, 2006, with the celebration of the fifth plenary session and the approval of the final report “European textiles and clothing in quota-free environment: High Level Group follow-up report and recommendations�.

The meeting of the sherpas (technical representatives of every member) on February 23rd, 2006 agreed that the final report would be drawn up under the coordination of Bill Lakin, Director General of Euratex. It should be noted that on March 8th, the former leaders of the HLG working groups, including ACTE as leader of the working group on regional policy, held a meeting in Brussels with the representatives of DG Enterprise and Industry to set up the agenda for future works and submission of the final report.

A first draft of this report was submitted and analyzed in the sherpas' meeting of June 23rd. The heads of the working group of HLG and representatives of the European Commission met again on July 27th to complete and end the draft report.

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The sherpas validated the final version of the report in a meeting performed on September 5th in which ACTE was represented by the former president of the General Assembly, Edgardo Canuto, and the representative in Brussels, Christina Marent. 

ACTE’s contribution to the contents of the final report of the High Level Group

We remind here that to contribute actively and representatively to the final report of HLG, in the Spring of 2006, the ACTE Secretariat gathered the opinion of ACTE members on: the members’ perspective for the sector for 2020, the impacts of market liberalisation on the territories, the potential short-term measures to face these impacts, examples of best practices to tackle the challenges of globalisation and the nature of the financial support of the EU required by the territories.

The contributions received by the members of ACTE were compiled in the new recommendations of ACTE and the summary of actions taken at the regional level, which was prepared by the Executive Secretariat as a contribution to the HLG final report.

The final report of the high level Group includes (Annex I): -

The progress of the industry since the June 2004 report of the high level Group in the areas of competitiveness and internal market, education, training and employment,

intellectual

property

rights,

regional

aspects,

research,

development and innovation and trade policy. -

Unfinished business

-

New recommendations

-

The vision of the textile and clothing industry for 2020

The details of regional policy to which ACTE contributed decisively are on pages 7/8 (implementation of recommendations), 10d (unfinished business) and 24 (new recommendations) of the final report.

The High Level Group reinforces its recommendation to draw up and implement Local Textile Strategic Plans: “In the light of the positive results achieved in a number of textile/clothing regions as a result of the early implementation of local strategic plans, the High Level Group considers that greater publicity should be given to the outcome of

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such strategic plans, and that wherever possible, they should be used as a basis to convince other textile/clothing regions of the intrinsic value of the establishment of such plans” (Page 24 of the report).

In this regard, several projects taken by ACTE or its members are quoted in the report:

-

The pilot project of the regional government of Tuscany in the textile, clothing, shoe, fur and jewellery industries;

-

The Local Strategic Textile Plans performed by ACTE and the Spanish Intertextile Council in 9 regions in Spain;

-

The launch of SIT (Integrated service of the Textile industry) of the City of Mataró;

-

The project "Strategic approach for the textile cluster of Sabadell and Terrassa";

-

The implementation of the Textile Observatory of Anoia;

-

The initiative for a Strategic Plan of Val do Ave;

-

Awareness actions in Belgium, Italy and France

It should be reminded that the concept of the Local Textile Strategic Plans is one of the proposals ACTE succeeded in incorporating into the HLG recommendations in 2004, which are included in the communication "The textile and clothing industry after 2005: recommendations of the High Level Group" of the European Commission of October 13th, 2004. 

High Level Group plenary session on 18 September

On September 18th, 2006, the final report” European textiles and clothing in a quotafree environment” was approved at the fifth plenary session of the HLG. The meeting was chaired by Enterprise and Industry Commissioner and Vice-president of the European Commission, Günter Verheugen, in presence of the Director General of the DG Trade, David O'Sullivan. ACTE was represented by the former Executive Secretary, Teo Romero.

During his involvement, Teo Romero stressed that ACTE contributed to the final report with several examples of how European textile territories actively worked and were organised to face, in a planned and harmonized way, the difficult processes of structural adjustment. Furthermore, he asked the European Commission to ensure a quick implementation and an effective follow-up of the new recommendations.

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With this meeting, the activities of the HLG formally ended. However, it has been agreed both to keep on the discussions between the different stakeholders of the industry and the European Commission and to try to arrange a meeting by the end of 2007 under the EU Portuguese Presidency to inform about the follow up of the new recommendations implementation and the industry development. 3. Working groups and European projects

As already informed to the members in the 2005-2006 ACTE’s Activities Report the European Commission in July 2006 approved the Inclua (“Working Together for the Inclusion of immigrants) and Twintex Museums projects. The subvention amounted to € 39,000 for the Inclua project and € 59,491 for the Twintex Museums Project.

Both projects were submitted by AMAVE (Inclua) and the Comune di Prato in cooperation with ACTE, to the DG EAC Nº24/05 call for proposals “Promotion of Active European Citizenship: Support to Town Twinning Actions”. The projects’ main goal was to re-launch ACTE’s working groups - immigration/development cooperation and textile museums – understanding projects as starting points to foster closer long-term relations between interested partners.

In the period addressed in this part of the report, project leaders – in tight collaboration with ACTE’s Executive Secretariat- started the project preliminary stage and proceeded to the final conference organisation on December 3rd, 4th, 2006 (Inclua) and March 30th, 31st 2007 (Twintex Museums).

To this respect, we can highlight the following activities:

-

Logistic organisation of conferences, conference room booking, hotel, interpreters, transportation, etc.

-

Production of information material: logo, flyer, website portal, media advertising, etc.

-

Elaboration of press releases and organisation of press conferences in Portugal (Inclua), Brussels and Lodz (Twintex Museums) to announce the conferences.

-

Invitation to project partners

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-

Invitation to speakers (representatives of European Institutions and other stakeholders)

-

Contents elaboration: Collection of partners’ experiences and best practices in the areas concerned (immigration, textile museums and archives, industrial heritage, etc.), questionnaire definitions, compilation of data and material for the exhibitions arranged for both projects.

In sub sections 4.b y 4.d of the second part of this report you will find detailed data about the Inclua and Twintex Museum projects final conferences. 4. Communication plan

ACTE´s

communication

strategy

pursues

a

triple

objective:

strengthening

communication between network member, making the association and its activities known and addressing potential new members. The infoflash and newsletter launched by the Executive Secretariat in 2005 constituted an important step towards greater notoriety and visibility of the network and its actions. 

ACTE Infoflash

Infoflash is the main communication instrument among network partners. The frequency it is sent with depends on the news and information which may be necessary to broadcast about ACTE itself, its effective and adhering partners and the European institutions. The preparation of an Infoflash implies a continuous follow-up of European news, the search for documents coming from the European Union in three languages (Spanish, French and English) and further translation to these languages of the information passed on. Between the General Assembly of Mouscron and the Extraordinary Assembly of Guimaraes, 9 Infoflash ACTE (21/2006 – 29/2006) were sent in three languages: Type of information disseminated by infoflash

Partner searches for projects 12%

News from the European Union 12% News from ACTE Members 41%

ACTE News 35%

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ACTE Newsletter

ACTE newsletter provides summaries of the main activities of ACTE, its partners and the European Union. Similarly, it includes a section with information about conferences and meetings, European projects or open European Calls for Proposals which may be of interest to the members.

ACTE newsletter is published in three languages (Spanish, French and English), and it is different from Infoflash in the sense that it is sent less frequently and that the type of recipient includes others more than the network partners: representatives of European institutions, members of the High Level Group, National, Regional and Local Public Administrations, Chambers of Commerce, unions and employer organisations, etc.

In the month of October 2006, the Executive Secretary published the seventh issue of the newsletter. In the section

“ACTE NEWS”, the main results of the General

Assembly of Mouscron were reported, the approval on behalf of the European Commission of the Inclua and Twintex Museums projects and the participation of the Executive Secretary in the fifth plenary meeting of the HLG. The information included in the section “MEMBERS’ NEWS” comes from Lodz (Poland), Ontinyent and the Leitat Technology Centre (Spain) and the Province of Novara (Italy). 5. The reflection document “ACTE 2007-2013: a strategic proposal” 

Introduction

During ACTE’s General Assembly held in Mouscron on July 8th 2006 and because of a request by the Executive Committee, a postponement of the debate of new positions and the mandate plan was approved, subject to a stage of reflection and search of new and deeply shared goals.

Representatives from Comune di Biella, Comune di Prato, AMAVE, Ayuntamiento de Terrassa and Diputación de Barcelona contributed to this reflection by agreeing an initial proposal of a reflection document for the Guimaraes Extraordinary Assembly in December 2006. This document was intended to be the foundation for a dialogue and ideas exchange among the network partners to optimize the network future work.

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The Executive Secretariat sent the document proposal to all ACTE partners in order to widely legitimate all the possible results generated by this reflection process. The Secretariat received contributions and amendments from: ACTE Italy, ACTE Spain and ACTE Poland in form of collective and agreed contributions between national members from those countries and the Ville de Verviers (Belgium). ACTE France transmitted a document as well – introduced for the first time at the Mouscron Executive Committeeincluding proposals as to ACTE's organisational model and its possible modifications.

The different contributions were incorporated by the Executive Secretariat in the final version of the document of reflection “ACTE 2007-2013: A strategic proposal" (Annex II) approved on December 4th, 2006 by the Guimaraes Extraordinary Assembly.

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The contents of the reflection document

The starting point of the reflection document is the following SWOT analysis which shows the opportunities and strengths but also the threats and weaknesses of our network: OPPORTUNITIES

O1: Monitoring developments in international trade O2: High-Level Group and European industrial policy in general O3: Similar problems in other industries (potential synergies) O4: Growing awareness in Europe about such subjects as relocation, the relocation of workers (for example, the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund) O5: Recognition of the importance of the manufacturing industry for EU economic growth O6: Structural Funds linked to innovation and mature sectors at risk of relocation O7: Capacity for adaptation in the sector => commitment to new high value added products O8: Interest from possible new members O9: Active participation by adherent members may strengthen the Association O10: New members from candidate (Croatia) and new EU Member States (Poland) => availability of European funds F1: 15 years’ experience F2: Recognition of European institutions F3: Recognition and cooperation with EURATEX and ETUF:TCL F4: Existence of internal and external communication tools (website, Infoflash, Newsletter) and technical expertise F5: Existence of a common denominator amongst members: textile history F6: Great confidence amongst core membership F7: Voluntarist network model

STRENGTHS

THREATS

A1: Discredit of the textile and clothing industry’s image A2: Drastic downsizing of the industry in European territories and consequent loss of critical mass of interest A3: Adjustment cycle not completed A4: Part of the industry unwilling to change business model

D1: Withdrawal of members that have ceased to be “textile territories” D2:Imbalance amongst vice-presidencies: number of national members and degree of commitment to network activities D3: Lack of resource diversification(dependence on membership fees) D4: Insufficient distribution of tasks D5: Lack of participation / commitment by members D6: Negative aspects linked with the voluntarist 1 network model D7: Little rotation of posts, generating certain image of jobs for the boys WEAKNESSES

1

An association which, like ACTE, follows a voluntarist network model has low membership fees and depends mainly on the human resources of its members. Unlike this model, the asociation Eurocities has high fees which allow having an own and professional organisational structur.

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Considering the information included in the SWOT, the document is based on several premises: -

Economic, industrial and social realities of member territories have changed;

-

The constantly growing membership requires an improvement of the mechanisms for participation and exchange systems for members;

-

The increase in the number of members and possible new priorities and spheres of action require an optimization of the network organisational structure;

After analyzing the new realities of the member territories, the functioning of the internal and external communication of the network, the organisational structure and the impact of our lobby action, the document includes several new proposals to improve the forthcoming network tasks.

Let us highlight the most important ones:

- Expansion of ACTE’s sphere of action

In the past years, many ACTE members have become “non-textile territories”, but textile history was and is the main common element shared by the member territories. Many members share the will to transform this past into collective memory: textile museums and archives, safeguard and/or conversion of textile industrial heritage etc. That is why we suggest strong support to the textile orientation of our association.

Nevertheless, it is important to expand the sphere of action within the textile sector, where there are sub sectors upon which there has been no influence so far and that offer new opportunities for action. These sectors belong to the model known as sistema moda, composed of the textile, manufacture, shoes, leather, jewellery, tanning, fur, glasses and watches sectors. These industries are mainly composed of small and medium enterprises and are mainly characterized by their production specialization and territorial concentration. We propose to pay special attention to the promising field of technical textiles granting an essential role to ACTE’s adhering members, considering their knowledge contribution capacity.


Likewise, we propose analyzing the possibility of expanding ACTE’s future activities to traditional and mature industries, “crisis” sectors or those affected by structural adjustments which in many cases are similar to the sistema moda sectors.

- Enhancement of ACTE’s organisational structure

It is necessary to enhance ACTE’s organisational structure by adjusting it to the increase of the membership, and the implied activities and services provided for the members. The reflection document highlights the importance of previous technical work, essential for proper operation, and which has to be improved in the future. A good example of this is the development of the Inclua and Twintex Museums projects by a team of technicians from the Executive Secretariat and some Vice Presidencies. A better distribution of tasks between the Executive Secretariat and the Vice Presidencies would not only reduce the significant work load of the Secretariat but it would also reinforce the Vice Presidencies’ responsibilities by assigning them thematic responsibilities according to their interests, coordinating for example work groups.

- Lobbying actions

The identification and definition of concrete lobby priorities is essential to carry out a successful lobby campaign. Thus, the reflection document proposes the appointment of ACTE’s “Thematic Years” following an example of the thematic years implemented by the European Union. In this way, the network could, for a year, focus its actions and exchanges of experiences between members on a specific issue.

In the past years, the European Committee, and particularly its Directorates General Enterprise and Industry and Trade, has been the main speaker for our association. Nevertheless, it is time to enhance ACTE's visibility before other two important target of European lobbying: the European Parliament and the Committee of the Regions.

Given the end of the activities of the HLG, it is important to search for new lobbying fields and to take advantage of other community participation instruments: introduction of amendments to the European Parliament and the Committee of the Regions, participation in public consultation, writing of positioning documents, etc. Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

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6. Other activities 

Conferences / seminars

The former delegate in Brussels has attended several meetings and conferences, establishing contacts, taking notes and gathering documentation.

For the period covered by the first part of this report, these are the most important items:

27.07.2006

Meeting of leaders of the HLG working groups

05.09.2006

Meeting of sherpas of the High Level Group

12.09.2006

Public hearing of the INTA Committee (International Trade) of the European Parliament on the creation of a Euro-Mediterranean free trade area

18.09.2006

Plenary session of the HLG

28./29.09.2006 Europe for Citizens Forum 27.10.2006

Meeting at Lille with ACTE’s Vice President for European Affairs, Colette Huvenne, and Patrice Leclerque from the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Lille

08.11.2006

Conference “Morocco: a moving country. Business Projects and Opportunities”, Lille

13.11.2006

Conference “Global Europe: competing in the world – The way forward”

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PART II

Introduction

As previously mentioned, the General Assembly of Mouscron approved the postponement of debate for new positions and the Mandate Plan for an Extraordinary Assembly. This decision was based mainly on two reasons: in the first place, the petition by the former President, Jean Pierre Perdieu, since he was in an election process, to extend his mandate for a few months. The second reason owed to technical- budgetary reasons, that is, to coincide the meeting of the Assembly with the calendar year and thus present the annual financial report.

The Extraordinary Assembly held in Guimaraes on December 4th 2006, approved – at the proposal of the Executive Committee – the following new ACTE’s representatives (new organisation chart in Annex III): o

President: Teo Romero, Diputación de Barcelona

o

Executive Secretary: Fabio Giovagnoli , Comune di Prato

o

President General Assembly: Jerzy Kropiwnicki, Miasta Lodz

o

Treasurer: Montserrat Capdevila, Ayuntamiento de Sabadell

o

President Court of Auditors: Francisco Ferreira, AMAVE

o

Vice President for European Affairs: Edgardo Canuto, Comune di Biella

o

Delegate for International Affairs: Colette Huvenne, Région Nord Pas de Calais

With the approval of the new representatives and the reflection document “ACTE 20072013: a strategic proposal”, our association undoubtedly made significant qualitative progress. We should emphasize the commitment of the new Presidency and Executive Secretariat to maintain a close leadership relationship, through distribution of the main duties and responsibilities of the network (see sub section 5a of the second part of this report).

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In line with this new dynamics, the new 2007-2009 Mandate Plan (Annex IV) has been jointly developed by the Presidency and the Executive Secretariat. Likewise, the plan aims at responding with priorities and concrete activities to the strategic approach of the reflection document.

This part of this report gathers thus the actions performed by the Presidency and the Executive Secretariat pursuant to the strategic lines of the new ACTE 2007-2009 Mandate Plan.

1. Increase in representativeness of the association and international relations

a.

Enlargement within the EU 27 and candidate countries

To increase the action and representation potential, ACTE needs to count with a major geographical representativeness. The specific objectives of the strategy line 1.a of the new plan fosters the enlargement of ACTE towards other member states of the EU, in special towards countries of the 2004 and 2007 enlargement, and the adherence of the candidate countries of the EU to ACTE.

Much to the contrary to the situation taking place in countries which are already ACTE members, where our association is already known, the adherence to the network of a new country constitutes a slower and longer process for it implies preliminary work as regards the introduction of ACTE and its activities. The establishing of a direct and personal contact with the representatives of the respective new territories through visits and meetings results in an important element for possible future incorporation to ACTE. 

Greece

Greece was identified as one of the main priority countries for ACTE in 2007 due to the importance that the sectors of the fashion system continue having in this country. Thanks to a contact established at the end of 2005 with Meletis Karabinis, General Director of the Greek Clothing Industry Association, ACTE was invited to participate in the conference “Social Dialogue and Mechanisms for crisis forecasting and prevention for the clothing sector�, organised within the frame of the Pro-Crisis European Project on 8th March 2007. Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

16.


On this occasion, our association was represented by Christina Marent, ACTE technician for the Presidency who participated in the workshop 3 of the conference “Development Initiatives to support regions to handle crisis”.

Christina Marent introduced our association and activities and specially ACTE’s new strategic approach which has been stated on its reflection document. Similarly, several initiatives were carried out by the network partners to manage with success structural changes: the pilot project of the regional government of Toscana within the scope of the fashion system, the local textile strategic planning in the nine regions of Spain and its results, the competitiveness poles in France, etc.

Besides, at the Athens Conference information material about ACTE (leaflets, information about accession modalities) was provided to the assistants and a meeting with a representative of the City Council of Naoussa Imathias, Costas Vainanidis was held. As a consequence of this, the ACTE Presidency got in touch with the Mayor of said city, Tassos Karabazos, to provide him with additional information on the network and to express our interest in the incorporation of this textile city.

The Presidency will continue strengthening the contacts established in Greece to achieve the incorporation of new Greek local and regional collectivities. 

Turkey

One of the results to be obtained during the 2007-2009 mandate through the strategic line 1.a of the plan is the adherence to ACTE of Turkish partners, being one of the possible future EU members and where the textile and fashion industry continues having a weight of importance within domestic economy. Fabio Giovagnoli and Roger Pumares, Executive Secretary and representative of the Presidency respectively, with the Deputy Mayor of Istanbul Ahmet Selâmet.

The

presence

of

ACTE

in

Istanbul

for

the

Euro-

Mediterranean conference (see section 3) was used for a meeting on 13 June between an ACTE delegation, headed

by the Executive Secretary Fabio Giovagnoli, Deputy Mayor of Istanbul, Ahmet Selâmet, and the Director for Relations with the EU, Yasar Karaca. Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

17.


ACTE´s representatives introduced our network, partners and main priorities for the 20072009 mandate. Similarly, they highlighted our wish to set up and deepen relations with countries of the Mediterranean basin and our interest in enlarging the network towards local and regional authorities of Turkey. By referring to the current integration process of Turkey to the EU, they presented the participation in a network like ACTE as a good means to know the realities of other European cities and regions and to participate in common European projects. The latter seemed of special interest for the Istanbul representatives which informed about the preparation of projects about female entrepreneurs in the textile sector.

After this first official contact in Turkey, the ACTE Presidency invited all the Turkish negotiators to participate as observers in the Brussels Executive Committee which took place last 18 September but unfortunately, they could not attend said meeting.



Others

Another activity the mandate plan identifies as appropriate to ACTE’s geographical expansion is the integration of possible future members to network projects.

In this sense, it is worth mentioning the participation of the German city of Albstadt in the Twintex Museums projects. The ACTE President, Teo Romero, invited the Albstadt representatives in the final conference of the project in Prato, Susanne Goebel and Doris Ruth, to take part as observers of the Executive Committee to introduce the city and to get to know the activities of our network. Susanne Goebel, director of Albstadt communal museums, made a brief presentation of this city of about 50,000 inhabitants and with a long history of weaving industries. The interest of Albstadt to continue working with ACTE on all the spheres of the textile museum and revaluation of the industrial heritage has been emphasized.

It is worth mentioning here that the participation of the Albstadt Museum in the Twintex Museums project resulted from a contact established in 2005 by the former delegate in Brussels with the Reutlingen Chamber of Commerce.

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The Presidency is at present making a follow-up of these contacts to ensure the adherence of Albstadt to the network.

Other non-member territories which through their participation in the Twintex Museums or Inclua projects have “made a first contact” with the network and its works dynamics are: Lyon City Council (France), the cities of Santo Tirso, Vila Nova de Familacao, Vieira do Minho, Póvoa de Lanhoso, Vizela, Fafe, Trofa, Vila do Conde and Póvoa do Varzim (all of them in Portugal). Being cities which are located in countries that are already ACTE members, the Presidency will trust in the collaboration of the French and Portuguese Vicepresidencies to achieve their adherence. b.

Increase in membership in the current ACTE countries

The Guimaraes Extraordinary Assembly of December 4th, 2006 has confirmed the inclusion of 14 new effective members as of 2007. All new ACTE effective partners come from the Vice-presidency of ACTE Italy, and are the following:

Name of member Regione Toscana Regione Piemonte Comune di Barletta Comune di Correggio Comune di Civitanova Marche Comune di San Mauro Pascoli Comune di Montecosaro Comune di Morrovalle Comune di Monte San Giusto Comune di Fermo Comune di Petriolo Comune di Corridonia Comune di Porto Sant’Elpidio Comune di Monte Urano

Country Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy

Inhabitants 3.500.000 4.341.733 99.000 23.008 38.899 10.500 5.306 9.420 7.509 35.502 2.058 2.139 22.752 7.802

As regards the withdrawals, the following effective member from ACTE has expressed its wish not to renew their membership:

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Name of member Ayuntamiento de Tomászow Mazowiecki

Country Polonia

The leaving of the Tomászow Mazowiecki Council is owed to the fact that the necessary agreement of the competent ministry in Poland has not been reached. As regards the requests for inclusion as effective members for 2008, the candidate that shall be proposed for approval during the General Assembly to be held at Carpi (Italy) on December 7th, 2007 is:

Name of member Comune di Carmignano

Country Italy

Inhabitants 13.000

As regards withdrawals from ACTE, the following effective members have expressed their wish for leaving the association. Their resignations shall be validated during the next General Assembly in Carpi (Italy) on December 7th.

Name of member Nottinghamshire County Council Ayuntamiento de Salt Ville de Roubaix Comune di Montevarchi Diputación de Jaén

Country United Kingdom Spain France Italy Spain

The reasons for these withdrawals, already approved during the Prato Executive Committee on March 31st, are as follows: for the Nottinghamshire County Council, the resignation is due to political changes, as well as the new internal administration structure.

Salt City Hall is one of the Spanish members which has not paid membership fees in the past years. Therefore, the automatic dismissal of this member has been brought up for consideration. The Ville de Roubaix does not renew its membership because the Communauté Urbaine de Lille shall be the local agency mainly in charge of economic development issues. The Montevarchi Council: one of the Italian members who has not paid fees for the past years. Jaén County Council: the textile industrial reality of the province has changed much in the past years, and therefore most companies are

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20.


concentrated at a regional level. Therefore, their membership in ACTE shall be represented by Andalusia. Overview of members Effective members per country (taking into account the new members and withdrawals approved by the Extraordinary Assembly Guimaraes and new requests for membership and withdrawals)

Members per country

COUNTRY Italy Spain France Poland Croatia Belgium Portugal TOTAL

Portugal

MEMBERS 32 26 3 3 3 2 1 70

1

Belgium

2

Croatia

3

Poland

3

France

3

Spain

26 32

Italy 0

5

10

15

20

25

30

35

Contribution to the budget of ACTE per country Belgium 4% Poland 4%

Portugal 3%

Croatia 2% Italy 41%

France 8%

Spain 38%

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21.


c. Adherent members

During the Guimaraes Extraordinary Assembly of December 4th, 2006 the following inclusions as adhering members to ACTE have been approved, as of 2007: Name of member Fundación CETEMMSA (Mataró) CCI Lille (Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Lille) R.S. Ricerche e Servizi SRL PIN – Polo Universitario Prato Tecnotessile Prato

Country Spain France Italy Italy Italy

During the Guimaraes Meeting, the withdrawal of the CENESTAP technological Centre (Portugal) has also been announced. They terminated their activities for lack of funding.

The inclusion of the new adherent members to ACTE reflects the objective expressed in the 2007/2009 Mandate Plan regarding especially the possibility of obtaining benefits from the contribution of these members, in professional and projects issues, such as technological innovation, the economy of knowledge, etc.

For this purpose, at the Twintex Museums Conference held in Prato on March 30th, 2007, the ACTE Executive Secretariat organised a parallel meeting between some ACTE adherent members and other subjects acting in the research and technology transference fields. This meeting was attended by Gloria Serrrano (Leitat Technological Centre); Engineer Giovanni Pieri (consultant for the Novara Province and expert in REACH); Patrice Leclerq (CCI Lille); Michał Frydrysiak (Lodz University), who have met representatives from the PIN -Polo Universitario Prato and the Tecnotessile Research Centre, with the purpose of interchanging knowledge and good practices about innovation and technological transfer.

Also in 2007, Joan Carles Fajardo from the CETEMMSA Technological Centre has taken part as ACTE’s representative in the Conference “Restructuring and Industrial change in the textile-clothing sector”, held in Brussels on April 25th, organised by the European Trade Union Federation: Textiles, Clothing and Leather (ETUF:TCL) (see point: 3.c).

Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

22.


As regards 2008 inclusions, during the General Meeting to be held in Carpi (Italy) on December 7th, the following candidates shall be considered: Name of member

Country

AITEX – Textile Technological Institute Spain (Alcoy) ASINTEC (Talavera) Spain ITIS Tullio Buzzi (Prato) Italy CNA Federmoda (Bologna) Italy Tessile e Salute (Biella) Italy d. Enhancement of co-operation with non European members

The specific objective of the strategy line 1.d is that of establishing – in the mid and long term - contacts with countries of the Euro Mediterranean basin, of Southeast Asia and of Latin America. The Euro Mediterranean Conference (See section 3) of 12 June in Istanbul was an excellent occasion to meet representatives from countries of the Mediterranean basin. The Presidency contacted Mr. Mohammed Lachkar from the Morocco Ministry for Industry and Trade beforehand to schedule an informal meeting with the Executive Secretary Fabio Giovagnoli and the President of the ACTE General Assembly, Jerzy Kropiwmicki. Mr. Larbi Benrazzouk from the Morocco National Agency for the Promotion of the SMEs also attended this meeting. This first contact helped to introduce ACTE and its activities and to get acquainted with the reality of the Moroccan textile regions. 2. Communication activities

An association such as ACTE which counts with 70 members at present and a potential for growth, needs appropriate mechanisms for all members to be active and constantly updated on the activities of the network. At external communication level, the activities carried out and the available instruments need to contribute to the promotion of our corporate image and an increase of the network’s notoriety.

Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

23.


a. Infoflash

The specific objective of line 2.a is an increase in the number of news coming from ACTE partners, the promotion of a network as a platform for the exchange of

information,

experiences

and

best

practices,

reinforcing of the network inner life and broadcasting of the results to the Executive Committees and the General Assembly. As regards the information broadcast by infoflash, it can be distinguished between the news from the EU, the ACTE news and the news of the ACTE members and the search for partners for European projects. The latter can be facilitated by members and by non-member entities.

One of the results to be obtained during this mandate is that the Infoflash should be conceived as an authentic instrument of work, as an interactive means of communication. We realize nowadays that only a few ACTE partners consider it a good opportunity to share their ideas, policies and initiatives at regional or local level with other members. Besides, there is a great deal of inequality as regards the transfer of news from ACTE participant countries to the Presidency to be published in the Infoflash: News by country

Spain 13%

Poland 6%

Portugal 6%

Italy 75%

In this sense, the Presidency shall work, during this term of office, to achieve a greater number of news derived from partner countries. Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

24.


Along this year, the Presidency has sent 20 infoflash bulletins to partners. One of the pieces of news when compared to previous years is that in January 2007, the Presidency published this communication instrument also in Italian version, making the information distributed appear in four languages already: English, Spanish, French and Italian. For the translation of the news to Italian, the Presidency counts with the collaboration of the Executive Secretariat.

Type of information disseminated by infoflash

Partner search for projects 14%

News of the European Union 44%

News of ACTE members 26% ACTE news 32%

b. Newsletter

The main objective of the Newsletter is to increase the external visibility of our association and the promotion of its activities. Before the publication of each newsletter, the Presidency invites the members through an infoflash to contribute their news. Nevertheless, the echo of the members is generally of a limited type. Thus, one of the greatest challenges during this term of office shall be that of increasing in a considerable way the

number

of

news

facilitated

by

members.

It would be important that the section “Members’ news” included at least one piece of news by each vicepresidency.

Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

25.


News by country

Poland 10%

Portugal 10%

Italy 20%

Spain 60%

With the incorporation of the Italian language as from January 2007, the newsletter becomes a quadrilingual communication tool: Italian, Spanish, French and English. For the translation of the news to Italian, the Presidency counts with the collaboration of the Executive Secretariat. Along this year, the Presidency published issues 8 (January), 9 (April) and 10 (July) of the newsletter.

c. Web site The ACTE web site (www.acte.net) is the basic external presentation tool of the network. The main activities of ACTE are announced on the site, constantly updated by the Presidency. Furthermore, the homepage informs about the release of a new edition of the ACTE Newsletter, which external users can subscribe to free of charge. The new ACTE mandate plan foresees the design of a new web site of our association in order to increase substantially the number of users of the portal, the external visibility of the association and the dissemination of the proposals and activities of ACTE.

The re-design of the web site will be carried out once the new ACTE logotype is selected (see point 2.e). It is important that the new web site is more user-friendly and the information provided is of added value for current and potential future ACTE members. Thus, the Presidency will take into consideration the proposals for an enhancement of the

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26.


contents of the web site which are included in the reflection document: in-depth information about current members, a section dedicated to potential future members, information about open EU calls for proposals, new documents published by the EU institutions in strategic/priority areas of ACTE, etc.

The current web site already includes the section Members area which for the timing being is not operational. Before the initiation of the Intranet, the Presidency will determine the costs involved (installation and maintenance) and the interest of this service for members.

d. Advertising material

The Presidency, in close co-operation with the Executive Secretariat, has published a new ACTE leaflet. The leaflet is basically conceived as a “presentation card” of our association: it includes basic information about the association and its members and about our main objectives and activities. It also includes the up-dated list of members of ACTE which can be change at any time. The leaflet is available in EN, ES, FR, IT, PL and PT. For the translation to French, Polish, Portuguese and Italian the Presidency was supported by the respective national vice-presidencies and Executive Secretariat. The leaflet can be considered as a support tool to the vicepresidencies in their efforts to increase membership at national level. Therefore, the Presidency sent in August examples of the leaflet to the vice-presidencies for dissemination. We would like to stress that the elaboration of the new advertising material did not cause any costs for ACTE as it was produced by human and financial resources made available by the Diputación de Barcelona.

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27.


e. Corporative image

At the Extraordinary Assembly in Guimaraes in December 2006, ACTE decided to extend the scope of its activities by incorporating the subsectors of the textile sector known as Sistema Moda in order to respond to the new economic and social realities of members. Thus, the Executive Committee in Brussels – upon the proposition of the Presidency and Executive Secretariat – agreed to launch a call for proposals for the design of a new ACTE logotype which should represent the new image of our association and its different activities. The Presidency prepared the call for proposals in 4 languages (Spanish, Italian, English and French) and sent it to all ACTE members via infoflash 16/2007. Besides, the information on the call was also published at the web site of our network. Until the deadline for the submission of proposals (12 November), the Presidency has received 26 proposals from 6 European countries:

Logotype proposals per country 12

10

10 7

8 6

4 3

4 2

1

1

Italy

Austria

0 Spain

France

Croatia

Belgium

According to point 7 of the call for proposals, the Presidency and Executive Secretariat have selected the 3 best proposals amongst all proposals. Due to the fact that two proposals obtained the same rating, it was decided to accept 4 proposals to be presented

Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

28.


at the General Assembly in Carpi, Italy, on 7 December 2007. This decision did not imply any additional cost for ACTE as two of the finalist proposals were submitted by the same applicant.

The 4 finalist proposals are the following:

Proposal 1: Maja Paukovic, Varazdin, Croatia

Proposal 2: Stefan Raab. Vienna, Austria

Proposals 3+4: Sergi CatalĂ . Barcelona, Spain

The finalist proposal will be presented at the General Assembly in Carpi which will act as jury. From that moment on, the new logotype will be used in all events, actions and communication tools of ACTE.

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29.


f. Media at European and national level

The strategic line 2 e aims at increasing the presence of ACTE in the relevant media (at European, national, regional and local level), raising our profile and enhancing the visibility of our claims. 

Organisation of press conferences

The organisation of press conferences is an important tool to communicate and visualise our activities. The organisation of a press conference entails several activities: to contact the pertinent media by means of a call, preparation of a press release and the realisation of a press-review.

In the period covered by this second part of the report and within the framework of ACTE, several press conferences have been organisation to inform about specific activities: 04 -12-2006

Press conference in the framework of the Inclua project in Guimaraes, Portugal

26-01-2007

Presentation to the press of the Twintex Museums project, premises of the Representation of the Tuscany Region in Brussels

22-02-2007

Presentation of the Twintex Museums project in Lodz, Poland

31-03-2007

Press conference to present the results of the final conference of the Twintex Museums project in Prato, Italy

In the framework of the last Executive Committee in Brussels, a joint press conference of ACTE and the European Trade Union Federation: Textiles, Clothing and Leather (ETUF:TCL) was organised on 19 September to present to the press the Petition for a certified quality. Transparency, traceability, composition and origin of products of the TCL sectors (Petition Fashion and Health). .

For the preparation of the press conference, the Presidency was assisted by Paolo Ranfagni, head of communication of the Representation of the Tuscany Region in Brussels. The call in 4 languages (Spanish, English, French and Italian) was sent to the Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

30.


Spanish, Italian, French and Portuguese correspondents in Brussels, to the main European media and all the regional offices based in the European capital. Besides, the Presidency sent the call for the press conference to ACTE vice-presidents for its dissemination amongst the pertinent media at local, regional and national level.

The press conference was held at the premises of the Tuscany Region in Brussels on 19 September. The Petition was presented by ACTE President and Vicepresident for European Affairs, Teo Romero and Edgardo Canuto, and by Valeria Fedeli and Patrick Itschert, ACTE President Teo Romero together with Valeria Fedeli and Patrick Itschert during the press conference

President

and

General

Secretary

of

the

ETUF:TCL.

The conference was attended by the members of the ACTE Executive Committee and several media representatives: agencies AGL and ANSA, Europa Press and the public Italian television RAI.

The press-review revealed an important journalistic coverage of the event and the ACTE and ETUF:TCL press release (Annex V), especially in the Spanish and Italian media.

3. Strengthening the lobbying action

a. Definition of concrete lobbying activities

Following the proposals contained in the Reflection Document ACTE 2007-2013 a strategic proposal, approved during the Extraordinary Assembly in Guimaraes, ACTE has proposed to devote its annual activity to the celebration of a Thematic Year, that is, to identify the concrete priorities of lobby and to develop specific interventions for the determined issues.

ACTE has proposed to devote the year 2007 to the thematic year Fashion and Health, by drafting for this purpose a petition reflecting the needs and the requests expressed by economic and social partners, paying special attention to the relationship between health

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31.


and safety of products, consumers’ defence, workers’ defence, and respect for the environment.

The celebration of 2007 as the thematic year Fashion and Health appeared due to the considerations about the risks caused by the introduction in the market of textile products whose production process is outside the control, since they often use products and processes which are no longer permitted in Europe.

Specifically, on the one hand the problem of certifying the safety and the quality of products of the European fashion system (textile, clothing, leather, shoes and accessories) is considered and, on the other hand, the problem of creating a control system for imported products is also taken into consideration. For this purpose, ACTE has decided to develop a number of initiatives to expand the safety conditions of products belonging to the fashion system and in this way to fight the possible effects on the health of workers and consumers (contact dermatitis, allergies, dermatologic diseases in general).

ACTE’s Executive Secretariat has developed and put forward to ACTE’s Executive Committee in Prato on March 31st, a draft for the Petition document, to consider with the interested members – territories, economic and social players, research centres, and stakeholders in general – the technical aspects of the document, and to issue a final version before the end of July 2007.

Different subjects have contributed to the drafting and editing of this document, among others the ETUF:TCL; LEITAT and CETEMMSA technological centres; the Tessile e Salute Association from Biella (Italy); Confartigianato Moda nazionale; the Toscany region, the Unione Industriale Pratese; Tecnotessile; CNA Federmoda; Unione Industriale Biellese.

There are two requests in the Petition, as regards European Commission and EU Member States. To the European Commission, the ACTE Petition requests: •

To define a clear definition of “risks arising from textile, clothing, leather, footwear and accessories products”, both in the production processes and in their final use, which could be put into practice – in accordance with the

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32.


REACH regulation – through the institution of national observatories evaluating risks for human health based on the experiences already gained in certain EU Member States. •

To extend to the Member States of the EU the creation, updating and networking of specific national data bases aimed at the collection and monitoring of all chemicals substances used in the production processes of the TCL sectors.

To promote the experimentation of a procedure to guarantee the origin of TCL products intended for consumers in accordance with health and safety regulations.

On the other hand, in the case of the Member States of the EU, the ACTE Petition requests: •

To commit themselves to approve the European Directive concerning the introduction of a mandatory origin label at least for TCL products imported in the Internal Market.

To implement the rapid alert system RAPEX in full;

To establish specific surveillance agencies, to monitor the reactions caused by textile products and by contact dermatitis.

The final version of the Petition Fashion and Health (Annex VI) was approved during ACTE’s Executive Committee meeting held in Brussels on September 18th. On the same day, the Petition was also approved by the Executive Committee of European Trade Union Federation: Textiles, Clothing and Leather (ETUF:TCL).

On September 19th, ACTE and the ETUF:TCL presented the Petition text at a joint press conference, held at the premises of the Representation of the Tuscany Region in Brussels (see 2.f).

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33.




Dissemination Plan of the Petition

The last ACTE Executive Committee, which took place in Brussels, September 18th, agreed that Petition would be approved by local councils of municipalities and/or local governments of ACTE members – if possible – before the celebration of next General Assembly, which will take place in Carpi (Italy), on December 7th.

By December 6, the ACTE Presidency has been informed about the following approbations of the Petition: Italy

Spain

Comune di Prato Comune di Montemurlo Comune di Vaiano Comune di Carmignano Provincia di Prato Regione Toscana Comune di Carpi Comune di Correggio Provincia di Macerata Provincia di Milano Provincia di Pistoia

Diputación de Barcelona Ayuntamiento de Terrassa Ayuntamiento de Sabadell Consell Comarcal del Vallès Occidental Ayuntamiento de Santa Margarida de Montbui Ayuntamiento de Pineda de Mar Ayuntamiento de Igualada Ayuntamiento de Manresa Consell Comarcal de l’Anoia LEITAT Technological Center

Portugual AMAVE National Association of Municipalities Câmara Municipal de Viera do Minho Câmara Municipal de Vizela Câmara Municipal de Cabeceiras de Basto Câmara Municipal de Fafe Câmara Municipal de Guimaraes

Poland Complete list of accessions in annex VII

Croatia Municipality of Varazdin Municipality of Krapina Municipality of Zabok Municipality of Cakovec Minister of Economy, Employment and Enterprise of Republic of Croatia National federation of Croatian Textile, clothing, leather Trade Unions Professional group of leather industry, Chamber of Economy of Croatia

Croatian cluster of textile industry Chamber of Economy of Varazdin Chamber of Economy of Croatia Chamber of Economy of Cakovec Professional group of textile industry, Chamber of Commerce of Varazdin Professional group of leather industry, Chamber of Commerce of Varazdin Professional group of textile, clothing and leather industry, Chamber of Commerce of Krapina

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34.


Once the Petition will have been approved by all ACTE members and by other non member entities at national and European level, the document will be submitted during 2008 to representatives of European institutions.

b. Maintenance of a stable dialogue with the European institutions

Among ACTE activities, setting up and maintaining a stable contact with European Institutions is one of the most important challenges. The current recognition of ACTE at European level is due, above all, to our contacts with the European Commission, particularly with the DG Enterprise and Industry and Trade in the framework of the work of the High Level Group.

Nonetheless and in consideration of the end of the works of the High Level Group, it is important to optimise ACTE’s profile and visibility before the other main targets of our European lobbying: the European Parliament and the Committee of the Regions.

In this regard, let us highlight the following activities: 

Participation of ACTE in the Euro-Mediterranean conference of the European Commission

In February, 2007, Michaela Senarova from DG Enterprise and Industry of the European Commission, contacted the ACTE Presidency to ask for collaboration in obtaining speakers at the regional and local level, to be invited to the Euro-Mediterranean conference

“Textiles

and

Clothing

Sector

at

Time

of

Globalisation:

Managing Structural Changes and Remaining Competitive”, which took place in Istanbul on June, 12. The conference aimed at discussing initiatives at EU, national and regional level that facilitate the textile and clothing industry in the Euro-Mediterranean region to adjust to structural changes and mitigate socio-economic impacts of restructuring

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35.


ACTE Presidency sent following contacts to the European Commission:  Tuscany Region (Italy)  Conseil Regional Nord-Pas de Calais (France)  Diputación de Barcelona (Spain)  Technology Centre LEITAT (Spain)  Competitiveness Pole Up-Tex (France) Following this phase, DG Enterprise and Industry took contact with the Conseil Régional Nord-Pas de Calais to ask for its participation in the Conference. LEITAT and Up-Tex were invited to another Euro-Mediterranean Conference on Innovation and Research in textile and clothing sectors, which took place in Cairo, Egypt, on 6 and 7 September.

In the Istanbul conference, ACTE was represented by Jerzy Kropiwnicki, General Assembly President, who spoke in the panel II - “Structural changes in textile regions – the role of regional authorities”, together with Dave Quayle, member of the Committee of the Regions, and Jerzy Kropiwnicki, President of the General Assembly, during the Euromediterranean conference in Istanbul

Néjib Karafi, Director General of CETTEX. ACTE General Assembly President underlined the institutional and

territorial approach of our association to face sectoral challenges: both companies and workers are located in ACTE territories. As a result, local and regional political representatives are “obliged” to secure an appropriate framework and to set up effective instruments and tools. With these regards, several supporting instruments designed and developed by ACTE during the last years were presented, such as strategic planning processes; strategic changes in companies; programs for worker relocation and for diversification of economic sectors and research of employment alternatives. (Annex VIII) 

The relations with the European Parliament

During the mandate 2007-2009, ACTE will deepen considerably its relations with the European Parliament.

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36.


This institution plays a more and more important role in the legislative process of the European Union. For this reason, a sensitisation of the European Parliament is needed on issues such as structural changes of industry and territories, etc, and that this might be reflected in its future policies.

Of particular political interest to ACTE is the re-launching of the textile and clothing working group of the European Parliament, which was constituted in July 2005 under the coordination of Tokia Sa誰fi (France) and Joan Calabuig (Spain). This working group can be a very important forum for the presentation of ACTE activities and good practices.

It is also important to monitor the activities carried out by European Parliament committees, such as: Committee on Industry, Energy and Research (ITRE), Committee on International Trade (INTA), Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL), and Committee on Regional Development (REGI).

Direct and personal contact with MEPs is essential in order to accede to (privileged) information and/or to submit amendments. In this regard, let us highlight the support given to the ACTE Presidency by the ACTE Vice-president for European Affairs, Mr. Edgardo Canuto. With regular travels to Brussels, Mr. Canuto plays an important role in establishing and maintaining contacts with MEPs, preparing meetings between ACTE representatives and MEPs, etc.

With this regard, ACTE Vice-president for European Affairs cooperated to organise and to manage ACTE visit to the European Parliament, on September 18th, in the framework of the ACTE Executive Committee held in Brussels. On that occasion ACTE Presidency could rely on the logistic support from the office of Mr. Gianluca Susta, an Italian MEP. Help was provided to reserve a meeting room with MEPs; managing accreditations for ACTE members, organise a guided tour to the European Parliament.

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37.


On September 18, a delegation of ACTE, headed by Teo Romero and Edgardo Canuto, met MEPs Tokia Saïfi and Joan Calabuig. Anna Kuchta, assistant of the Polish MEP Zbigniew Zaleski, also took part in the meeting. After a brief presentation of ACTE, Teo Romero submitted the requests included in the Petition “Fashion and Health”, which has been approved the same day by the Executive Teo Romero and Edgardo Canuto with MEP Joan Calabuig.

Committees. He also underlined that the Petition of ACTE and the ETUF:TCL was neither protectionist nor alarmist,

since ACTE called for reciprocity, and a fulfilment of the European norms concerning products imported from third countries. Tokia Saïfi and Joan Calabuig showed a sincere interest for ACTE position, and expressed their support for the Petition requests.

The meeting was also an occasion for the President to ask for the re-launching of the EU Parliament working group on textile and clothing. Mr. Romero underlined ACTE availability to contribute to working group activities, providing its expertise and good practices developed at the regional and local level.



The consultative organs of the European Union: the Committee of the Regions and the European Economic and Social Committee

The Committee of the Regions (CdR) constitutes one of the future priorities of ACTE lobbying activities. The CdR is one of the consultative organs of the EU, representing EU towns and regions. The Committee provides a very interesting participation instrument for the European associations, the so called structured dialogues. Launched in 2004 and hosted by the Committee of the Regions, the structured dialogues are a form of contact between the European Commission and the associations of local and regional authorities. The aim is to improve legislation by ensuring the integration of local and regional associations’ viewpoints before the formal decision-making processes start.

Thanks to continuous contacts established since 2005, ACTE has been invited to participate as speaker in the 5th edition of the Structured Dialogue with European Commissioner and Vice-president of the European Commission, Ms. Margot Wallström , to discuss about “2008 Legislative and working program of European Commission”. Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

38.


This meeting, held in Brussels on November 29, was also attended by Mr. Gerhard Stahl, General Secretary of the Committee of the Regions, and by Mr. Herve Jouanjean, Deputy General Secretary of the European Commission. ACTE was represented by Mr. Jerzy Kropiwnicki, President of ACTE General Assembly and also member of the Committee of the Regions.

Invited European associations can submit a brief presentation of their vision concerning a specific issue, including the possibility to address specific questions to the representatives of the European Commission, participating in the meeting. During the 5th Structured Dialogue, ACTE was assigned to the “Lisbon Strategy for growth and employment”, addressing issues concerning “Workers and employment”.

Mr. Jerzy Kropiwnicki underlined the importance of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund to mitigate negative impacts of globalisation at workers level. Yet, he asked the European Commission to make these funds directly available to territories which are strongly hit by the closure of enterprises, the reduction Jerzy Kropiwnickj during the Structured Dialogue

of personnel and the lack of entrepreneurial dynamism (Annex IX)

The ACTE Presidency has also asked that ACTE could be included in the so called Subsidiarity Monitoring Network of the Committee of the Regions. This network was created in 2005 and is a tool for exchanging information between European territorial actors on policy documents and proposals of the European Commission which – when adopted – will have an impact on local and regional authorities and the policies for which they are responsible. The purpose of the network is to serve as an access point that will give local and regional authorities the possibility not only to get information, but also to have their voices heard. As far as the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) is concerned, ACTE Presidency took contact with Mr. Claudio Cappellini, EESC rapporteur on the “Development of the European textile and footwear industry” and member of the Consultative Commission on Industrial Change. Mr. Cappellini was very interested in Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

39.


ACTE activities, and expressed his willingness to include ACTE in future activities of the Commission, with regard for sectoral issues. Mr. Jerzy Kropiwnicki, President of ACTE General Assembly participated in the public hearing “The development of European textile and clothing industry”, organised by the EESC Consultative Commission, on October 30 in Vilanova de Famalicao, Portugal. The aim of the public hearing was to discuss about the most important challenges affecting textile and clothing industry, providing case studies and the exchange of good practices in some European regions. Mr. Kropiwnicki presented experiences on how to manage structural changes in the town of Lodz Jerzy Kropiwnicki, President of the General Assembly during the public hearing in Vilanova de Famalicao.

(Poland) of which he is mayor. He also informed about activities carried out by ACTE in the framework of its Petition on “Fashion and Health”, and invited the attendees to join the initiative.

c. Maintain a stable dialogue with the socio-economic partners

Both companies and workers of textile sector and fashion system are located in our territories. It is therefore essential to keep a stable dialogue with the main social and economic partners, such as Euratex and the ETUF:TCL.

In this regard, the contacts with Euratex and the ETUF:TCL have been numerous during this year:

 Euratex and the ETUF:TCL invited ACTE to participate in the conference “Restructuring and industrial change in the textile and clothing sector”, which took place on April 25th in Brussels. Mr Joan Carles Fajardo, responsible for innovation of CETEMMSA – a Spanish adherent member of ACTE – spoke as our association representative. The "Strategic Management Guide for SMEs" and the digital tool Reorientex, which provides opportunities for the reorientation of activities of textile enterprises, were presented during the round table "Innovate and propose tools

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40.


focused on SMEs". Both tools derive from the editing of the Local Strategic Textile Plans in Spain.  Both Euratex and the ETUF:TCL participated as speakers in the final conference of Twintex Museums Project, on March 30th in Prato.  Within the framework of ACTE 2007 Thematic Year Fashion and Health, Fabio Giovagnoli and Edgardo Canuto, ACTE Executive Secretary and Vice-president for European Affairs, held a meeting on September 6, with Mr. Michele Tronconi, Euratex President, to submit him the requests included in the Petition, and to ask for collaboration from his institution to join the initiative.  The ETUF:TCL contributed with its technical expertise in the design and draft of the Petition, and approved the document during its Executive Committee, held in Brussels, on September 18th. The same day, a delegation of ACTE, headed by Teo Romero and Fabio Giovagnoli, was invited to present the Petition to the Executive Committee of the ETUF:TCL.

The joint press conference of ACTE and the ETUF:TCL, held on September 19th, officially launched the Petition to Fabio Giovagnoli and Teo Romero, during the ETUF:TCL Executive Committee on th September 18

all concerned European media (see paragraph 2f).

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41.


d. Other lobbying actions

On July 13th, ACTE President Teo Romero participated in the public hearing “Challenges to competitiveness in textile and clothing sector”, organised by the working group on textiles of the Assembly

of

Portugal.

The

event

gathered

representatives of the European and Portuguese Teo Romero, ACTE President, with Valeria Fedeli, ETUF:TCL President, and Portuguese deputy Rosário Águas

institutions and social partners to discuss on how to preserve the sector's competitiveness in Europe.

Teo Romero presented the main challenges of structural changes in the sector from the territories' perspective. He also underlined the importance for ACTE of the Petition “Fashion and Health” and invited the participants to join the initiative. Finally, he stressed the positive dynamic of ACTE's networking activities which allow exchanging experiences between members to find concrete solutions to shared challenges.

ACTE invitation to the Portuguese Assembly hearing resulted from the contacts maintained by the Portuguese ACTE Vice-presidency with the organisers of the event.

4. Promotion of strategic projects: European programmes and working groups

a. Introduction

The capacity to develop strategic projects started as a challenge and a chance to guarantee a higher visibility of ACTE, providing better economic and financial resources for the development and expansion of its activities.

These aspects can be especially seen in the Reflection Document ACTE 2007-2013: A Strategic Proposal, where different issues related to the improvement of the association’s organisational structure are considered; for instance, tasks can be distributed in a better way and proper technical work can be done.

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42.


During the year 2006, ACTE successfully submitted to the European Commission - DG Education and Culture – two-project proposals, INCLUA and Twintex Museums to the Community Programme for the Promotion of Active European Citizenship. The first one started and finished in 2006. The second one, finished in 2007, is included in the framework of activities of the Textile Museums work group, coordinated by the Comune di Prato. b. Project Inclua On December 4th and 5th 2006, the INCLUA International Conference – Working together for the inclusion of immigrants – was held at the Centro Cultural Vila Flor in Guimaraes. This conference was sponsored by the European Commission, through the Towntwinning

Program, which

promotes an Active European Citizenship, DG EAC n.º 24/05, and has been organised by AMAVE in cooperation with ACTE. In this occasion more than 80 political representatives and authorities of different European Union cities attended, as well as several national and international speakers.

The following were partners of the INCLUA project: AMAVE – project leader; Badalona, Diputación de Barcelona, Igualada, Manlleu, Manresa, Mataró, Ontinyent, Sabadell, Terrassa, St Coloma de Gramanet (Spain); Prato, Biella (Italy); Roubaix (France); Lódz (Poland); Vieira do Minho, Póvoa de Lanhoso, Vizela, Fafe, Guimarães, Santo Tirso, Trofa, Vila Nova de Famalicão, Vila do Conde e Póvoa do Varzim (Portugal).

With these attendances, and the participation of the Portuguese Government, represented by the Secretary of State and the domestic Administration and the High Commissioner for Migrations and Ethnical Minorities, this conference became a milestone for the local governments to change the way they handle integration of immigrants in Portugal. At a presentation of good practices developed by several cities and/ or regions of ACTE, AMAVE intends to start a wider project to deal with integration of immigrants.

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43.


The different participants and the numerous attendees have analyzed and shared ideas about the way of working, aiming at improving processes of social and labour inclusion of third-country residents living in the municipalities which are part of the project and promote a common European identity, moving citizens to an active role in the integration and inclusion of immigrants.

On the second day of work, four thematic workshops were held, which addressed the following issues:  Best practices and methods for the social/labour integration of immigrants  Best practices and methods for the sensitization of citizens  Presentation of best practices of local policies fro the integration of immigrants  Elaboration of a draft protocol on the cooperation between European cities and regions in the field of integration policies and development cooperation with the countries of origin c. ACTE working groups As of 2007, ACTE’s Executive Secretariat, in accordance with the fulfilment of its duties, has taken over the coordination, management and performance of activities of strategic projects to be carried out jointly with ACTE’s members. ACTE’s 2007/2009 Mandate Plan, responding to the requests and petitions made by members, established different intervention fields to be financed through participation in European programs and presentation of project proposals to specific calls for proposals which imply co-funding by the EU and the partners interested in presenting / participating in this project proposals. The following working groups have been especially determined:

-

Textile Museums: coordinated by the Comune di Prato;

-

Research and Innovation: with the aim of fostering cooperation among members and reinforcing their role in ACTE, through the development of specific project proposals for R&D;

-

Strategic and Urban Planning: to encourage the exchange of good practices and to develop common solutions to urban problems and issues;

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44.


-

Areas connected with the fashion system: to identify policies and tools to modernize and diversify territories depending on the fashion system.

To improve the efficiency and work for the assigned issues by virtue of the Mandate Plan, ACTE’s Executive Secretariat has developed and presented a prospect chart (Annex XI). Starting with the strategic lines contained in the Mandate Plan, the chart identifies the instruments, objectives, priorities, issues and the action calendar for the development of the project activities for each determined work group.

d. Project Twintex Museums

Presented by the Comune di Prato in 2006 and finished in 2007, the Twintex Museums Project– Twinning Textile Museums, financed by European Commission DG Culture and Education with a grant amounting to €59.491, within the framework of the Program for the Promotion of Active European Citizenship.

The project’s aim has been the “promotion of European textile cities as centres for change – based on innovation, the entrepreneurial mindsets and the occupational growth – insisting on the role of textile museums, which promote innovation of product and process, encouraging consolidation of the existing networks among local agencies, textile museums, and economic partners”. The main activity has been connected with the organisation of a two-day thematic conference, held at Prato’s textile museum on March 30th and 31st, 2007. The same day, the Exhibition Towards a European Textile DNA was inaugurated, and which has received textile samples from the following ACTE’s cities and museums: Fabio Giovagnoli, ACTE Executive Secretary, Andrea Cavicchi, President of the Fundation Museo del Tessuto di Prato, and Massimo Logli, President of the Province of Prato, during the inauguration of the Twintex Museums conference

Prato,

Terrassa,

Sabadell,

Lodz,

Schio,

Verviers,

Roubaix. The first ACTE Executive Committee in 2007 was also held at this occasion.

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45.


The partners of the Twintex Museums Project were the following: Comune di Prato – project leader; Comune di Carpi, Comune di Schio (Italy); Mairie de Verviers (Belgium); Ayuntamiento de Terrassa, Ayuntamiento de Manresa, Ayuntamiento de Sabadell, Ayuntamiento de Manlleu, Ayuntamiento de Mataró, Ayuntamiento de Igualada, Ville de Roubaix (France); Guimaraes Council, Santo Tirso Council, Vila Nova de Familaçao Council (Portugal), City of Lódz (Poland). The first day of the conference – open to public - focused on the following issues:

1) Financing opportunities of the new European Structural Funds, related to the solution of urban problems caused by the transformation of economies with traditional productions (especially textiles) 2) The roles of textile museums as agents of change at local level 3) Connections between textile museums, the business world and technological innovation

The second day, on the contrary, was devoted to project partners, experts and representatives from the territories of ACTE, organised in three work groups. The following issues were discussed:

1) Textile heritage of twin towns having textile museums: a common protocol on

European textile heritage 2) Textile archives of companies and textile museums: Towards a European Textile

DNA. 3) Textile production identity and local development: Towards the knowledge based

economy

The conference was an important success given the high number of participants (180 registrations on the first day of the conference). The conclusions developed by the three working groups have also allowed the preparation of a list of priority interventions, which shall be performed through further project proposals.

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46.


e. Project Eurotex ID – European Textile Identity Database

Submitted by the Prato Textile Museum as a part of the Program Culture 2007- Action 1.2.1 Cooperation Measures – on October 31st, the Eurotex ID Project has been submitted to the Executive Agency for Education, Audiovisuals and Culture of the European Commission.

The main aim of the project is to carry out an interdisciplinary activity in order to discover and promote the European textile industry of the 19th and 20th centuries, through identification and valuation of the European textile heritage; the promotion of long-term cooperation between cultural, institutional and economic partners; to foster creative reinterpretation activities and the circulation of young artists and their works of art.

The following partners are participating in the project, currently under evaluation by the EU Commission – and for which a co-funding by the Community for €200,000 has been requested, with a total budget of € 400,000:

-

ACTE, with a funding of € 2,500;

-

Documentation Centre and Textile Museum of Terrassa;

-

Associaciao CCG/ZGDV–Centro de Computacao Grafica de Guimaraes;

-

Escola Professional CENATEX de Guimaraes;

-

Winchester School of Art, University of Southampton;

-

AMAVE

f. Project proposal European Fashion Security Action Plan Last July, the Executive Secretariat issued a proposal for a project, called EU. Fa. S. A. P. European Fashion Security Action Plan, which should have been submitted to the European Commission, DG Employment and Social Affairs, in the framework Budget heading 04.03.03 - Industrial relations and social dialogue .

The presentation of the proposal for the project European Fashion Security Action Plan was related to funding the activity for promotion, distribution and experiment of the

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47.


contents of the submitted Petition “Fashion and Health”, with special attention for a possible funding of the activities to be performed for the thematic year 2007 Fashion and Health.

The project, which received the cooperation and technical assistance of the Tessile e Salute Association, was consistent, in its contents and aims, with the project Constitution of a national surveillance agency for contact dermatitis due to products used in the textile industry and a control system for imported textile products, now applied in Italy, coordinated by the ’ISS (Superior Health Institute) and the Tessile e Salute Association.

The main aim of the project European Fashion Security Action Plan was to contribute to an improvement in the quality of work and growth of competitiveness of the European fashion industry, ensuring a high level of production for human health and the environment, by developing a European action plan for health, safety and controlled route of products in the fashion system.

The project, coordinated by ACTE, established the constitution of an advisory committee, with assistance from a scientific committee, composed of different economic and social partners at European level (ETUF:TCL; Euratex; UEAPME), and by a scientific committee (to perform research and study activities, experiments of models and the instruments for analysis and a controlled route of the products), composed of the following subjects: Association Tessile e Salute; Tecnotessile; Instituto Buzzi; Federchimica; Unitex; Health Institute (ISS- Instituto Superior de Sanidad); ISPESL; ISPRA, DG Sanco European Commission; LEITAT Technological Centre. The project proposal, with deadline for presentation of August 31st, had a budget provision of about €500,000, with possibility of 80% financing through EU- co-funding. The project has not been submitted, since one of the partners for the proposal, Euratex, has rejected to participate as it was engaged in a project to be submitted to the same call for proposals.

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48.


g. Other projects: partnership proposal in a LIFE Environment proposal Coordinated by ENEA (National Italian Agency for New Technologies), the ASTERIX project (An integrated Approach based on Sustainable Techniques to improve the Environmental peRformances of TeXtile SMEs in an industrial district) aims at reducing the environmental impact on textile SMEs, through an integrated process that allows for the reduction of polluting emissions (liquid, solid and gas) and energy consumption and natural resources.

ACTE will take part in this call (with deadline for presentation of projects on November 30th) as a partner, responsible for marketing and promotion of the activities for the project, organising conferences, seminars, creating a logotype, etc.

5. ACTE governance

a. To increase the professionalism of ACTE

According to ACTE’s 2007-2009 Mandate Plan, institutions taking an important role in ACTE should contribute with technical and economic resources, to allow for an appropriate execution and development of the Association’s activities. For this purpose, ACTE’s Presidency (Diputación de Barcelona) and the Executive Secretariat (Comune di Prato) have established a joint leadership relationship, establishing an explicit distribution of duties and responsibilities appointed within the association, and introducing three full time professionals, at the Presidency and Executive Secretariat, respectively. Specially, ACTE’s Presidency has appointed the following duties and responsibilities:

Area i. Communication

   

Duties Maintenance ACTE website Drafting of the ACTE Newsletter Drafting of ACTE Infoflash Press releases

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49.


 Advertising material (leaflet) / cooperative image (logo) / publications  Relations with European Institutions  Relations with socioeconomic players at European level  Monitoring of European policies and agenda  Dissemination of ACTE activities and claims International / European events  Geographic enlargement of ACTE: enlargement within the EU 27 and Candidate countries  Promotion of international relations of ACTE: enhance cooperation with non-European countries**

ii. European Lobby*

iii. New members

*with support from the Vice President of European Affairs; ** with the support of the delegate for international relations On the other hand, for ACTE’s Executive Secretariat, the appointed duties and responsibilities are the following: Area i. Relation members

with

ii. Executive Committees and General Meeting

iii. Strategic projects: European programs and ACTE’s working groups

iv. Support Presidency

to

              

Duties Permanent contact with current members of ACTE Monitoring of the activities of national Vice-presidencies Registration of new members and withdrawals Transmission of calls and documentation Preparation of agendas and activities programme Centralisation of registrations Logistic assistance to members organising these events Preparation of a dossier for interpreters Drafting of minutes Monitoring of calls for proposals and European programmes and their publication Drafting and design of proposals of strategic projects Dissemination of proposals and partner search Monitoring of submitted / approved projects Coordination of working groups Support to the Presidency in the execution of ACTE activities

In addition, as of 2007, a provisional budget has been attached to the annual mandate plan, which establishes allocation of resources to the Presidency and the Executive Secretariat, according to the tasks and responsibilities appointed to each of them. Within this framework, ACTE's Executive Committee has decided to allocate, as provided in ACTE’s budget for 2007 – the amount of € 20,000 for proper operation of the Presidency and the Executive Secretariat.

Also for 2007, four meetings have been organised between the Presidency and the Executive Secretariat to implement guidelines for ACTE’s 2007 Action Plan.

Said meetings have been held according to the following schedule: Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

50.


-

February 16th 2007, Prato

-

May 10th – 11th 2007, Barcelona

-

July 16th 2007, Prato

-

October 16th 2007, Prato

b. To increase the added value of ACTE meetings

As of 2006, ACTE has increased its effort for official meetings of the Association (at Executive Committee and General Assembly level) to coincide with holding conferences or other events that could deepen the aspects and activities developed by ACTE, also contributing to the improvement of the external image and communication of the association. The Extraordinary Assembly of Guimaraes, for instance, took place in the framework of the Inclua thematic conference – Working Together for the Inclusion of Immigrants, which was held from December 4th to December 6th 2006, within the framework of the so-called project funded by the European Program Towntwinning.

Likewise, the Executive Committee held at Prato on the last March 31st has been included in the framework of the Twintex Museums Conference, which has gathered on March 30th and 31st more than 200 participants from different cities and textile museums, whether members or non-members of the ACTE network.

On both occasions, then, ACTE meetings (General Assembly and Executive Committee) have been surrounded by moments of high participation of the audience and operators interested in the issues dealt in both conferences. In turn, they have allowed the development of the activities internally established for the working groups determined in ACTE’s Mandate Plan, with particular attention to: 

Cooperation and immigration working group, coordinated by AMAVE;



Textile Museums working group, coordinated by the Comune di Prato;

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51.


Finally, last September, the Executive Committee in Brussels (held on September 18th) was closed with a joint presentation ACTE-ETUF:TCL to the press of the petition Fashion and Health at the premises of the Tuscany Region in Brussels.

These are some of the subject matters approved during ACTE's Executive Committee in Brussels:



Approval of a dissemination plan for the Petition “Fashion and Health”: The text of the petition should be approved by local councils of ACTE members if possible before the General Assembly of Carpi on December 7th. Likewise, within the framework of the General Assembly the conference Fashion and Health: challenges and Opportunities for Europe shall be held, with the aim of presenting the results obtained with the release of the document.



New ACTE logotype: A call for proposals has been launched for the design of a new ACTE logotype, with deadline on November 12th. Among the proposals received, the Presidency and the Executive Secretariat shall select the best three proposals and shall invite final candidates to the Carpi General Assembly on December 7th. The best proposal shall be voted there, and it shall receive a prize of € 2,000;



The activities developed by the Executive Secretariat, based on the project proposals submitted and a presentation contest at ACTE’s work group level.

After a short examination of the news presented as regards ACTE’s governance, a brief assessment can be made regarding the activities it is based on: improvement of work in relevant contents for the association (textile museum working group, immigration and cooperation working group); strong visibility of the association; rationalization of funds and higher economic availability, thanks to Community contribution; increase in the number of participants

at

meetings

and

public

events

of

Activities report of the ACTE Presidency and Executive Secretariat 2006-2007

the

association.

52.


ANNEXES

Annex I

HLG Final Report

Annex II

Reflection Document “ACTE 2007-2013: a strategic proposal”

Annex III

New ACTE organisation chart

Annex IV

ACTE 2007-2009 Mandate Plan

Annex V

Joint press release ACTE – ETUF:TCL, 19 September

Annex VI

ACTE Petition “Fashion and Health”

Annex VII

Accessions to the Petition in Poland

Annex VIII

Speech of Jerzy Kropiwnicki in Istanbul

Annex IX

ACTE participation in Structured Dialogues, 29 November

Annex X

Programme of the final conference of the Inclua Project

Annex XI

Table of projects

Annex XII

Programme of the final conference of the Twintex Museums Project

Annex XIII

Activities report of project Twintex Museums

Annex XIV

Eurotex project form

Annex XV

European Fashion Security Action Plan project form


Annex I HLG Final Report

EUROPEAN TEXTILES AND CLOTHING IN A QUOTA FREE ENVIRONMENT HIGH LEVEL GROUP FOLLOW-UP REPORT AND RECOMMENDATIONS

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY On June 30th 2004, the High Level Group for the future of textiles and clothing, established in February 2004 by former Enterprise Commissioner Erkki Liikanen and Trade Commissioner Pascal Lamy, adopted a report and a first set of recommendations entitled “The Challenge of 2005 – European Textiles and Clothing in a Quota Free Environment”. Since June 2004 the Group’s composition has changed to some extent, reflecting changes in the Commission, in national Governments, within the European Parliament and among other stakeholder groups. The June 2004 report summarised discussions within the Group over the period March to June 2004 and made some 36 major recommendations in the areas of: • Competitiveness and Internal Regulatory and Market Issues • Education, Training and Employment • Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) • Regional Aspects • Research and Development, Innovation • Trade Policy The present report has respected the order in which the above subjects were treated in the original report. However, since its major objectives were to take stock of the status of the recommendations more than two years after the adoption of the first report, and more than eighteen months after the end of the Agreement on Textiles and Clothing (ATC), then to attempt to draw up a credible vision for the future and to make further recommendations, this second report has been divided into four parts: • 1 - Introduction • 2 - Review of the implementation of 2004 recommendations and Unfinished Business • 3 – An attempt at a vision for 2020 • 4 - Recommendations for Further Action • Annex 1 : Members of the High Level Group • Annex 2 : State of play in the implementation of the 2004 HLG’s recommendations The report shows that a majority of recommendations from the June 2004 Report have been implemented or are in the process of implementation, in all of the major areas to which reference has been made above. Among these may be quoted the forthcoming study on distribution and retail structures, and access to credit, the enhanced sectoral social dialogue, industry initiatives in the IPR arena, regional initiatives by the Collectivities in Tuscany, 9 Spanish regions and Portugal, the funding of a project to achieve a technology breakthrough in apparel manufacture, and of projects in the technical textile domain, as well as the creation of the European Technology Platform for the Future of


Textiles and Clothing and the publication of its Strategic Research Agenda, the issue of guidelines for possible safeguard action against China, and the bilateral agreement with that country in June (and then September) 2005, and the review of preferential rules of origin and the GSP. The fulfilment of certain of the recommendations, however, has not always brought with it a solution to the specific problem posed, for example where the new chemicals policy REACH is concerned, and in the field of IPR much still remains to be done in spite of the fact that the latter issue has clearly moved up in the Commission Agenda over the past 2 years. In the field of Education, Training and Employment, a number of projects still remain to be completed or initiated, and it is not yet clear to what extent industry stakeholders will find a solution to the question of non-technological innovation from the current review of the Community Framework for state aid for research and development and innovation. In other areas covered by the June 2004 recommendations, the Commission and memberstates have been unable to secure their implementation without agreement from bodies or countries outside the EU itself. Nowhere is this more evident than where market access in the context of the Doha Development Agenda is concerned, but this has been the case too as far as the completion of the Pan Euro Mediterranean area is concerned, and where a number of countries have yet to sign bilateral free trade agreements with each other. The activity described above has occurred against a background of stagnant internal demand in a number of EU member-states, although extra-EU export levels have been sustained. Imports have grown following the end of the quota system, but their overall increases in both volume and value have been somewhat less than might have been feared. Overall the year 2005 saw the loss of a further 164.000 jobs across the EU-25. It is also against such a background that in the third part of this report, an attempt has been made to describe what changes the industry will need to make and what form it might take by the year 2020. The image provided is one of a strong, flexible industry which has responded to the challenges of a globalised economy and in so doing has obtained the co-operation of the public authorities at all levels. It has notably reformed its structures by creating larger groups, possessed of their own critical mass, vertically or horizontally, and taken greater advantage of standardisation opportunities. It has turned even more towards specialty products, new applications and mass customisation, using its Strategic Research Agenda and the opportunities offered by FP7. In addition, the breakthrough in clothing technology will have helped to shift apparel manufacture back towards the EU. The latter development goes hand in hand with the crucial need to maintain a lead in fashion and image and creativity, in the defence of which a range of IPR initiatives are set out aimed at combating counterfeiting and piracy in the industry within the EU, at its borders, and in third countries (TRIPs agreement, codes of ethics, more branding, enhanced co-operation with third countries and an increase in the number of national multi-sectoral anti-counterfeiting cells). These are repeated in the Recommendations set out in the final part of the text. The Vision chapter recognises too that none of the preceding achievements will prove possible if further attention is not given to skills and training in the sector to build on what has already and is currently being done at all levels. This will be accompanied by enhanced environmental and social standardisation, the latter linked to an increased awareness of issues generally subsumed under the designation “Corporate Social Responsibility�.


It is on the basis of the above chapter and of the elements of unfinished business mentioned previously that the final part of the report makes a series of recommendations for further action, in those broad areas covered in the original June 2004 Report. In general competitiveness terms, the industry is encouraged to seek synergies leading to the creation of companies possessed of the above-mentioned essential critical mass, whilst paying much greater attention to standardisation issues and the presentation of a positive image to the public as a whole, just as it recommends that greater publicity be given to the outcome of strategic plans carried out in the textile/clothing regions. It repeats the need to pursue the education and training proposals set out in the earlier report (better match between supply and demand, common qualification standards, reconversion and classification units), whilst requesting that industry and academia undertake pilot schemes to retain the necessary range of industry courses within the EU as a whole. In the Research and Development context, the Group requests that the Strategic Research Agenda be distributed as widely as possible, encourages its stakeholders to identify potential flagship projects for the industry, and urges all stakeholders to move speedily towards innovative technologies and business models, like mass customisation. On Trade Policy, the Group calls for efforts to continue, multilaterally or bilaterally to secure genuine market access (reduction of tariffs, removal of non-tariff barriers) for EU exporters, to encourage partner countries in the Mediterranean area to sign free trade agreements with each other, and to open their markets to EU exports. The Group believes too that market access can be fostered by synergies between European manufacturers and distributors and retailers, and therefore lends its full support to the liberalisation of distribution services in WTO and elsewhere. In conclusion, the High Level Group seeks the maintenance of objectivity and predictability where Trade Defence Instruments are concerned, and stresses the need for high quality stakeholder consultation.

CHAPTER 1 – INTRODUCTION On June 30th 2004 the High Level Group for Textiles and Clothing adopted a report and the first set of recommendations entitled “The Challenge of 2005 – European Textiles and Clothing in a Quota Free Environment”. The High Level Group itself had been established by former Enterprise Commissioner Erkki Liikanen and Trade Commissioner Pascal Lamy in February 2004 in view of the challenges that the sector was facing in relation to the upcoming abolition of the import quotas in January 2005. The High Level Group has had a mandate to formulate recommendations on concrete initiatives that could be undertaken at regional, national and EU level to facilitate the sector’s adjustment and improve its competitiveness. In addition to the above-mentioned Commissioners, and former Research Commissioner Philippe Busquin, the Group included Industry Ministers from four member-states, representatives of the European Parliament, of the textile regions of the European Union, industry, trades unions, and retail, importer and distributor interests. Over the period between its first meeting on March 5th and the approval of the first report on June 30th 2004 the work of the Group was concentrated on a series of major areas covering: • •

Competitiveness and Internal Regulatory and Market Issues Education, Training and Employment


• • • •

Intellectual Property Rights Regional Aspects Research and Development, Innovation and Trade Policy

As a result, and in the above areas, the High Level Group adopted some 36 major recommendations, the purpose of which was to set a framework within which the European textile and clothing industry could survive and prosper beyond the quota system which came to an end on December 31st 2004. In addition, since June 2004 the High Level Group met on one further occasion – 14th June 2005 – although a number of issues have continued to be discussed at group and Sherpa levels. The purpose of the present report then is to assess those aspects where the June 2004 recommendations have been already implemented or are in the process of implementation, to draw attention to areas of unfinished business, to present a vision for the future of the industry and to make additional recommendations for future action by stakeholders. Since June 2004 too the composition of the High Level Group itself has changed to some extent, reflecting changes in the Commission, in national Governments, within the European Parliament and among other stakeholder groups. The membership of the High Level Group as of September 2006 is indicated in Annex 1. Overall, developments in the textile and clothing industry since the issue of the June 2004 report have not entirely lived up to expectations. Internal demand has remained stagnant in a number of EU member-states, but, in part compensation, exports have maintained their proportion of total turnover, even if their further progress has been held back by a number of factors including a strong Euro and persistent trade barriers. This in itself is an unmistakeable sign that Europe’s textile and clothing companies are competitive. Nonetheless, the end of the quota system has inevitably led to increased import pressure. With regard to the impact on prices, the Commission services have commissioned a study to measure the effects of the progressive liberalisation of the textiles/clothing and footwear industries on import prices and consumer prices in the EU. An EC statement dated June 15th 2006∗ noted that the disruptive impact of liberalisation of Chinese textile exports to the EU in 2005 had been limited to a fairly narrow range of product categories. However, in the categories affected, there had been absolute rises in textile imports and steep falls in unit prices which were anticipated with the end of the quotas. The report states that “China’s share of exports to the EU in the textile categories liberalised on January 1st 2005 has increased sharply at the expense of traditional EU suppliers, mainly in Asia but also in North Africa and the ACP. There has, however, been only a modest rise in textile imports to the EU, either in the 35 products liberalised on 1st January 2005, or in total textile imports”. According to the statement, in 2005, China increased its exports to the EU by 42% in value and by 36% in volume. For categories liberalised in 2005 there was an increase in China’s market share by 130% in volume and 82% in value, which suggests significant falls in unit prices. In these products China, India, the US and Turkey were the only significant suppliers to have increased their exports in 2005. India’s increase in exports by value was 18%; the US’s 14% and Turkey’s 4%. This has been at the expense of all other suppliers to the EU. All other major suppliers have suffered export displacement in products liberalised in 2005. Pakistan, Indonesia, ∗

Evolution of EU Textile Imports from China in 2005 and the first quarter of 2006; source DG TRADE: http://trade.ec.europa.eu/doclib/docs/2006/june/tradoc_128999.pdf


Thailand, South Korea, the Philippines, Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macao have all seen exports fall in value and the most significant displacement by China has been exports previously originating from Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan. During the first quarter of 2006, world exports in all textile categories to the EU decreased by 11% in volume. As far as China is concerned, there is an overall decrease in exports to the EU of -12% in volume while unit prices increased by 9%. This was said to be largely due to the quantitative limits introduced in June 2005 which cover the ten most sensitive textile categories. On a positive note, the statement concluded that “China is becoming a key growth market for European textiles. EU exports to China were up 15% in 2005 and 16% in value for the first quarter of 2006 although yearly exports still account for less than €1 billion.” It is also noteworthy, and again contrary to popular belief, that the end of the quotas may well have been anticipated to a significant extent by companies in the sector during the course of 2004 itself, since job losses in 2005, although remaining at unacceptably high levels, were only marginally above those of the previous year (160.000 in 2004 compared to 164.000 in 2005), even if the June 2005 agreement with China has contributed to some extent to stem a rising flow of job losses in the later months of that year. Whilst it is not the purpose of this report to carry out an economic analysis of the post-2004 situation in the textile and clothing industry, it is nonetheless a fact that in a number of European countries the early months of 2006 have shown positive developments and a degree of optimism which was lacking in previous years. On average, EU household dedicate 6% of their expenditure to clothing and textile products and in 2005 final consumption in the EU-25 is estimated to have increased by +2,1%, to reach +/- 440 billion Euros, thanks mainly to dynamism in the consumption of the new member states. Part of the consumption increase may be attributed to a small reduction of consumer prices for clothing (-1,1%) and for household textiles (-0,9%) whilst carpet prices went up by +0,9%. The textile and clothing industry witnessed in 2005 a stagnation of production prices that did not help the industry to stem the contraction in production, in particular in the clothing sector (-8,4%). In addition investments decreased more specifically in the textile sector but at a much lower rate than in 2004. The EU-25 Textile and Clothing industry digest in 2005

Year – 2005

EU-25

EU-25 ∆ 05/04

198,0 2.218,7

-4,6% -6,8%

59,9 – (e) 154.866 5,07

-3,1% -6,1% -2,9%

440,0 – (e)

+2,1%

36,5 73,0 -36,6

+0,9% +5,6% +10,8%

ABSOLUTE FIGURES Turnover – billion € Employment 1000 pers. Added Value – billion € Companies (e) Investment – billion € Apparent household consumption of textile & clothing products (constant prices) – billion € Exports – billion € Imports – billion € Trade Balance – billion €


Source: Euratex calculations on National Associations data and Eurostat trends (e) – estimates

As for the 2006, new orders early in the year would tend to indicate some improvement in the situation overall, and this is more particularly the case where man-made fibres and clothing are concerned. Nonetheless, this has yet to be translated into higher levels of production.

CHAPTER 2a – REVIEW OF THE IMPLEMENTATION OF 2004 RECOMMENDATIONS Against this background a brief overview of those recommendations which have been implemented or are in the process of implementation in the six areas mentioned above appears essential, prior to an assessment of those recommendations which have yet to be implemented and can therefore be considered as “unfinished business”. This overview is not intended to be an exhaustive impact assessment of each and every recommendation, but seeks to point up those particular areas in which action has been taken as a result of the work of the High Level Group. Competitiveness and Internal Regulatory and Market Issues In the field of Competitiveness, and in respect of the EU’s chemical policy and new chemicals legislation REACH, an impact study was carried out in 2005 by independent consultants commissioned by DG Enterprise and Industry which provided clear indications of the negative effects that certain aspects of the new policy would involve. REACH is currently passing through the co-decision procedure where both Council and Parliament have been provided with suggestions arising from the impact study. In particular, the study showed that the serious possibility of de-selection of substances in (imported) articles (Art. 6) could well create additional costs to industry for which, as yet, no obvious solution had been found. Where competition and retail structures are concerned, a study on business relations in the EU clothing chain has now been commissioned by DG Enterprise and Industry. It aims to analyse the structure of the clothing distribution and retail sector across the EU, to examine the business relations between the different players involved, from the end of the chain of production through to the final retailer, to collect examples of best practises, and to recommend ways of overcoming any problems identified. Similarly, in the field of access to credit through the INNOVA programme, Euratex and a number of private stakeholder partners are undertaking, within the framework of a project entitled NETFINTEX, a study of existing best practises in the context of the financing of innovation for small and mediumsized companies. This will be followed by recommendations suited for application at European level. This latter initiative goes some way towards fulfilling the High Level Group recommendation, but it will not in itself resolve the overall access to credit problem and the need to improve the industry’s image in the financial/banking and credit sectors. Where industry marketing policy is concerned, private stakeholders have now, in line with the Group’s recommendations established a “Fashion Forum” encompassing the whole apparel pipeline from fibre to retailer. The initial meeting of this group demonstrated a genuine desire for full co-operation from all parties involved in the search for new apparel products and retail innovations. Further meetings will take place later in 2006.


Education, Training and Employment The recommendations in respect of Education, Training and Employment were predicated upon the need for better trained and more highly skilled employees at all levels, and at attracting the younger generation towards a career in the industry. The European dimension of these proposals made it incumbent upon the stakeholders to seek funding through a range of EU programmes. In the above context, work has already begun on a project related to the establishment of Observatories as proposed in the initial recommendation of the above chapter, as it has in relation to the development of common qualification standards, and an enhancement of the social dialogue at all levels through an integrated project in co-operation with the trades unions and employers of the tanning and dressing industry (COTANCE). This provides for the identification of weaknesses in the social dialogue in new member-states and candidate countries, and for the extension of the existing social Codes of Conduct in the two sectors to the abovementioned countries. The implementation of reconversion and reclassification units, together with a more flexible use of European Structural Funds, has in theory been made more accessible as a result of the Commission’s March 2006 proposal for a Globalisation Adjustment Fund, provided that member-states are willing to make effective use of it, since applications for its use lie entirely in their hands. Intellectual Property Rights – IPR The past two years have seen clear evidence that IPR issues are being given greater prominence by the authorities at both national and European level, instanced by the Commission’s dialogue with China in this area, the Loi Longuet in France, and the Commission’s Communication of October 20052. For European textiles and clothing, the importance of IPR cannot be overstated, as graphically described and illustrated in the original June 2004 report. In relation to the High Level Group recommendations themselves, industry stakeholders have played their full part. They have undertaken detailed discussions as to how best to create additional information and awareness among rights holders, have established codes of ethics for companies exhibiting their designs and models at international fairs, and have exchanged experience between companies and their associations at national and EU level based upon specific cases of IPR infringement or successful IPR protection. Action by industry stakeholders themselves was further strengthened by the landmark agreement on protection of Intellectual Property Rights signed in May 2006 between the German and Chinese textile and clothing industry federations (Gesamttextil-Mode and CNTAC) which other national associations and EURATEX are seeking to mirror in future agreements. The Commission itself launched a call for tender in March 2005 aimed at providing a comprehensive multi-lingual handbook reviewing national and EU legislation covering IPR in the textile and clothing industry, together with the toys, furniture, and footwear and leather industries. In the absence of satisfactory responses to this call, it was withdrawn and will be re-launched in a different form in 2007.

2

Communication from the Commission to the Council, the European Parliament and the European Economic and Social Committee on a Customs response to latest trends in Counterfeiting and piracy. Brussels 11.10.2005 COM92005) 479 final.


In a wider context, the Commission has stepped up its action in the field of intellectual property over the last two years working in a focussed and practical manner in accordance with the Strategy it launched in November 2004: 1. Participation in multilateral discussions on IP protection and enforcement. In particular the Commission is very active in the G8 context, has financially supported the economic study launched by OECD on the worldwide economic impact of counterfeiting and piracy, and is about to have a “full member” seat in the specific consultative Committee dealing with enforcement in WIPO. 2. The Commission initiated an action on IP enforcement within the context of the TRIPs Council: the aim is to improve the implementation of TRIPs rules on IP enforcement. 3. This is complemented by IP dialogues with the principal “problematic” countries: China and Russia mainly. Action in China has been expanded by putting into place an IP Working Group together with the industry, which is beginning to produce some very interesting results, and an IP expert in the Commission’s Delegation in Beijing. 4. Finally, the Commission conducts extensive technical assistance in third countries (in particular in China), including operational activities related to training of officials (judges, policemen, as well as Customs officials). In China, Customs activities in the field of IP are foreseen for 2007.

Regional Aspects The High Level Group recommended the establishment of local strategic plans to improve the allocation of public resources for the support of the textile and clothing sector. This recommendation had its roots in the three year integrated pilot project launched in January 2003 by the Tuscan Regional Government in the areas of textiles, clothing, shoes, leather and jewellery. This initiative sought to strengthen the competitiveness of small and mediumsized companies in the fashion field, by supporting innovation and the organisational and financial strength of companies. It involved business associations, trades unions, local government and chambers of commerce, and is currently the subject of an impact assessment. The Italian initiative was followed in 9 regions of Spain where strategic plans were elaborated providing for territorial and sectoral policy tools, through Spanish members of the Association of European Textile Collectivities (ACTE) and the Consejo Intertextil Espagnol, and was completed in June 2005. It has resulted in the launch of SIT (Integrated Services for Textiles, Mataro City Council) to facilitate relocation of workers and occupational training, a project entitled “Strategic Vision for the textile cluster Sabadell and Terrassa” to promote collaboration in the textile sector and with aeronautics and the railways, to produce high value added products; the establishment of the Anoia Textile Observatory, and the support plan for the textile and clothing sector initiated by the Spanish Ministry of Employment and Industry. ACTE is now seeking to disseminate experience gained as a result of the Italian and Spanish examples among its members in other EU member-states, and to secure appropriate funding for them. A similar initiative has now been launched in the Vale do Ave region of Portugal. In the above context too, a series of awareness raising actions with the support of local authorities, and members of the European Parliament, have taken place in Belgium, Italy and France. In addition, a number of regions in Spain have undertaken projects as a preparation for the support of workers in the textile and clothing industry. Moreover, a


number of private stakeholders, working together with part financing from various European funds, have sought to promote their industry’s exports with particular emphasis on the growing markets of Asia. A range of other initiatives have also been undertaken at regional level aimed at facilitating movement out of the sector, enhancing training and skills. These issues did not originally form part of the proposals coming within the scope of the regional aspects chapter of the High Level Group report, but they have undoubtedly played their part in achieving a number of the overall objectives of that Group. Research and Development, Innovation With the adoption of the LEAPFROG project and the ₏ 14 million funding for this Integrated Project from FP6, the first twelve months of this four-year effort to secure a breakthrough in apparel manufacture was complete as of May 1st 2006. FP6 also funded a number of innovative projects to the tune of more than ₏30 million which began during the course of 2006 and offer great potential in the fields of medical, protective, and building textiles. These initiatives all fulfil High Level Group recommendations in the areas concerned. Industry stakeholders have sought to make known to the authorities over the course of the period since June 2004 their needs to ensure the involvement of SMEs in all types of horizontal research projects, their desire for more transparent economic parameters to guide priority setting and budgeting in FP7, and in general the improvement of general conditions governing access to funds, as set out in their recommendations to facilitate industry participation in and SME access to public R & D and innovation programmes. The European Technology Platform itself was launched at the end of 2004. Setting itself the triple goals of moving the industry from commodity to speciality, developing new textile applications, and moving to an era of mass customisation in the apparel field; following a period of intense activity between AUTEX, TEXTRANET and EURATEX experts, representing respectively the Textile Universities, Research Institutes, and industries, the Platform unveiled its Strategic Research Agenda on 8th June 2006.


Trade Policy In the Trade Policy chapter of the June 2004 report, the end of the Agreement on Textiles and Clothing (ATC) and ongoing market access issues in relation to the Doha Development Agenda were the subject of special attention. In the former case, guidelines concerning the possible use of the specific textile safeguard clause by the EU were released in April 2005, and resultant investigations led to the signature of a bilateral agreement with China in June (fine-tuned in September) of that year covering ten product categories up to the end of the year 2007. In the latter case market access negotiations have yet to find a (preferred) multilateral solution within the stalled Doha Development Agenda. A study3 has also been commissioned and published under the auspices of DG Trade as to the conditions of production of textiles and clothing in China. It is planned to follow this up by a Conference organised by the Commission in December 2006 on the theme of decent work and globalisation. The main topics that are likely to be debated are (1) effects of global trade on decent work in developing countries, and (2) effects of global trade on decent work within the EU. In the meantime, as further recommended by the High Level Group, an action plan for market access in relation to tariff and non-tariff barriers has been elaborated by the Commission and industry stakeholders and efforts are ongoing to ensure its implementation. A review is also underway concerning preferential rules of origin. As part of a general study on the most sensitive items, DG Trade has commissioned a specific study on the impact of the reform of preferential rules of origin in the field of textiles and clothing. A final report will be issued in October 2006. Moreover the GSP+ has been implemented and thus provides duty free access to the EU market for a further 15 countries who have ratified and effectively implemented at least 23 key human rights and environmental conventions. This concise overview of developments following the recommendations contained in the June 30th report of the HLG demonstrates that substantial progress has been made towards the implementation of a majority of those recommendations. However, there remain a number of issues outstanding which will be treated hereafter.

CHAPTER 2b - UNFINISHED BUSINESS A glance at the original High Level Group recommendations on the one hand and of the process of implementation on the other clearly demonstrates that although a majority of the June 2004 recommendations have indeed been implemented in one way or another, a number still remain unexploited. It will also be evident that in a number of cases the lack of implementation of the recommendations stems from the fact that they are only capable of implementation with the agreement and/or involvement of other parties, whether within the EU or beyond its borders. (a) Where Competitiveness and Internal Regulatory issues are concerned, and in spite of the objective impact assessment study undertaken under the auspices of DG Enterprise and Industry, the industry is concerned about the issue of “substances in 3

Study on Chinese textiles and clothing industry and market expansion strategy


Articles� arising under Art. 6 of the current REACH proposal, itself closely linked to the need for equality of treatment as between EU manufactured goods and those imported from elsewhere. . Whilst two of the recommendations in relation to access to credit have been implemented, in the form of a guide for SMEs and NETFINTEX (see above), the industry itself still needs to undertake the necessary steps to re-build its image, and, in this respect, to be aware that public statements of an over-pessimistic nature will not facilitate this process. (b) Education, Training and Employment. It is clear that in this area much remains to be done if the ambitious recommendations of the June 30th report are to be fully implemented. A pilot project of social partners for media/information pools is certainly on the drawing board but no definitive project has as yet been submitted for E-Ten or EContent funding. The same too can be said of surveys to ensure a better match between supply and demand for training, and this is also the case where the collection of information on training programmes, current projects and funding availabilities are concerned. (c) It is certain that in the field of Intellectual Property Rights much remains to be done in active co-operation between the authorities and industry itself. With the exceptions mentioned in the preceding chapter, it has not proved possible to take direct action in relation to the Recommendations of June 2004. Indeed, even though most LDCs have deployed efforts to implement the TRIPS Agreement and have an IP legislation in place, they are still confronted with economic and institutional challenges. In this context, the TRIPS Council unanimously responded positively to the LDC request for extension. Although LDCs have promised not to reduce or withdraw the current IP protection they give, the industry regrets the decision being taken as to the prolongation of the period in which LDCs are to comply with the WTO TRIPs agreement. The recommendation that a User Friendly Web site be established to enable textile and clothing companies to easily obtain updated information as to how to protect their rights, what to do if they are copied and what is unregistered design, has not been fully achieved. Nonetheless, the Commission’s IPR Help Desk website for free-of-charge basic guidance on Intellectual Property issues subject already exists for this purpose. However, it will be self-evident from a visit to this site that the IPR Help Desk deals mainly with technology innovation and transfer issues and that SMEs from the textile and clothing industry may not find immediate responses to the less complex but more pressing questions they often have, even if the helpline directs the question to the relevant body. The Commission's efforts to improve the contents and the userfriendliness of the IPR helpdesk will continue under the CIP programme, especially as regards the web site navigation and a more sectoral approach. The High Level Group also recommended that seminars between rights holders, SMEs, police and customs authorities be organised in the presence of EU experts from industry and Commission across the enlarged EU. More information would be helpful here in relation to the actions and intentions of the Commission and of memberstates in following-up on the above recommendation, whether this be after the publication of a guide on the subject or at an earlier date. (d) In terms of that chapter of the June 2004 report devoted to Regional Aspects a number of recommendations requiring action from the authorities themselves could hardly be


expected to be followed up. The introduction to the June 2004 report states: It should also be stressed that during the course of the exercise various national administrations expressed reservations on elements which they viewed as being of an overly sectoral nature or as to their funding……….it must not be assumed that by participating actively in the High Level Group process, any public authority has committed itself to implement the conclusions reached. There is little doubt in this context that national and regional authorities have shown little enthusiasm for the recommendations relating to the re-programming of European Structural Funds for the period to end-2006, or indeed the concept of special regional initiatives for the sector in respect of the Structural Fund programme for the period 2007-2013. Similarly, the Commission and member-states consistently underlined that they would be unable to support the recommendation for a Community sectoral programme for the textile and clothing industry. Nor has any action of which members of the High Level Group are aware as yet been taken in respect of the proposal for Innovative actions of the ESF and ERDF. On the other hand, the Commission’s proposal on the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund has received broad support from member-states and could bring some relief to workers in the regions affected by the consequences of globalisation and structural change.∗ (e) One of the few issues outstanding where Research and Development and Innovation matters are concerned is that of facilitating access to research funding for smaller and medium-sized companies within the context of Framework Programme 7. The relative success or failure of this important recommendation can only be assessed in the first instance when more is known about FP7 itself, and subsequently when companies have had the opportunity to submit their responses to calls for tender under this programme. What is clear, however, is that industry has been in great need of a clear, non-ideological definition of non-technological innovation. The original June 2004 report indicated that it would be illogical that the investment of companies in this form of innovation should be treated any differently from parallel investments in research and development. In reviewing the existing state aids framework, current Commission thinking appears to be moving towards some understanding of the situation in this field by suggesting a doubling of the de minimis aid laid down in regulation EC 69/2001 (OJ L10, 13.1.2001), by allowing a degree of aid for industrial property rights costs incurred by SMEs, together with similar aid for process and organisational innovation in services and for innovation advisory services and innovation support services (see draft Community Framework for state aid for research and development and innovation). (f) In the context of external trade policy, with DDA negotiations suspended, little progress has been achieved in respect of harmonisation and reciprocity in (preferred) multilateral market access conditions in the DDA, nor has it in the bilateral area (Mercosur, GCC). As indicated previously in this report, in these two cases, the Commission and memberstates have needed to negotiate with third parties outside the European Union. The PanEuroMed system of cumulation of origin is now being progressively implemented. At the time when this text was drafted (August 2006) four Mediterranean partners have adopted the new Protocol of Origin (Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Morocco). The implementation of the PanEuroMed system is now dependent upon the willingness of the Mediterranean partners to conclude Free Trade Agreements with each other. In this respect, the signing or entry into force of several south-south FTAs (for example Morocco-Turkey, TunisiaTurkey, Israel-Jordan, Israel-Turkey, Agadir…) pave the way for the effective implementation of diagonal cumulation with a critical number of Mediterranean partners. ∗

See also Education, Training and Employment, above.


CHAPTER 3 - AN ATTEMPT AT A VISION FOR 2020 A. PREFACE Any vision of the future, however wide or narrow in scope, must in all logic be based upon certain assumptions, any number of which may in the end turn out to be correct or otherwise. For the purposes of this vision which concerns more directly the relatively narrow but not unimportant sphere of textiles and clothing, a number of basic assumptions have therefore been made. In some cases they offer hope and promise for the future, in others they assume stability, whereas a further group pose serious challenges across many sectors of European industry, if not for the world economy as a whole. The first premise however is that there will have been no major geo-political upheavals or worldwide conflicts by 2020; against such a background one may expect that the EU will have extended to Bulgaria, Romania and Turkey, with Croatia and Serbia also in membership or on the point of so becoming, that Europe’s internal decision-making will have evolved to the point where they can effectively accommodate a 30-member plus European Union, that current economic forecasts will be fulfilled (growth of India and China and others) and that the WTO liberalisation process will not have entirely stalled, even if it has failed to deliver equivalent market access to the now “emerging” countries for EU exports, including textile and clothing exports, as the latter countries have enjoyed to Europe. European wages and social charges will still be among the highest in the world and the wage gap with the Asian giants will only have been reduced to a limited extent in view of the abundance of relatively cheap labour which those countries will continue to possess. Although both Chinese and Indian population growth will have levelled off to some extent over the next fifteen years, proportionally it will continue to outstrip that of a slower growing N. America, and a stagnant Europe. The efforts of China and India in terms of R & D in its widest sense will enable them to become much more competitive both in terms of manufacturing and services. In addition to its current low-tech and commodity manufactures, China will be producing and exporting high-tech, high-profile goods such as aircraft and ground transport systems to much of the developing world at prices which the USA and Europe cannot rival. India will be omnipresent on international services markets, particularly in IT. These two countries will not be alone in seeking an ever-greater share of domestic and export markets of the “traditional” developed world. Their competitive abilities may also be boosted by even larger “domestic” markets brought about by wide-ranging Free Trade Agreements across much of Asia, including ASEAN, Japan, and the Indian subcontinent. The growth of such markets also offers opportunities for European companies to benefit from the resultant increased internal demand through exports from Europe or investments in those (Asian) markets. On the other hand, one cannot avoid the conclusion that against a more liberal and globalised background much more of the EU economy (and that of other developed nations) will be exposed to the chill wind of competition both internally and externally in both goods and services and that the value of the Euro (expected by then to have become the common currency of more than 20 countries) will weaken somewhat to reflect this effect. This will lead to a renewed awareness among the population of the importance to the EU economy of manufacturing linked to the benefits of Corporate Social Responsibility.


To this relatively sombre overall background needs to be added the fact that many of today’s poorest countries will remain so, at least in relative terms, whilst radical measures will need to be taken internally in the West and more particularly in the countries of the EU, to provide for the needs of an ageing population without ruining the aspirations of those in work who by definition will have to pay for these provisions. Nevertheless, the proportion of the population in Asia being financially in a position to acquire high quality clothing will offer the world’s textile and clothing industries serious opportunities to move further away from commodities and concentrate on those products which fulfil a different form of perceived need on the part of the consumer. Similarly, in Europe, an ageing but more selective population, with the time to choose, will also sustain demand for such higher-end quality products, which should work to the overall benefit of European producers.


B. ISSUES FACING THE ECONOMY AS A WHOLE WITH DIRECT RELEVANCE FOR EU TEXTILES AND CLOTHING It is clear that unless a major breakthrough occurs to make cheaper energy available, and since renewables cannot even bridge the gap between today’s supply and tomorrow’s expected global demand, the price of energy will continue to spiral upwards. This will force companies in all sectors of activity to invest in lean-burn manufacturing and transport equipment, to the advantage of those who are big enough to experiment with the most appropriate machinery to fit their production model. Higher energy costs will also mean that transport costs will increase as a proportion of the unit price of the delivered product, and should therefore add to the attraction of goods manufactured closer to home. The introduction of sophisticated sun/wind powered “sailing” ships with auxiliary motors may well become feasible, offering further opportunities for technical textile producers. The possible future “internalisation of external costs” covering raw materials, fuel, noise and other pollutants, could also make manufacture closer to home more attractive in the longer term. Energy availability is naturally a matter of concern to everyone on the planet. Industry in certain European countries in particular however is handicapped by unequal competitive situations which directly affect (price) competitiveness and derive from oligopolistic suppliers or environmental or other fiscal measures. On the other hand, as world fibre consumption grows, limited land availability will mean that artificial and synthetic fibres will represent an increasing share of world fibre usage, even if the price of oil will inevitably force up those latter prices too. Raw material input costs for the textile and clothing industry worldwide will therefore increase. Cotton will remain the dominant natural fibre, followed by wool, flax, silk, ramie, and others. The more recent introduction of bamboo and nettle fibres, among others, will make no significant impact on the market overall, but could well offer profitable opportunities for innovative specialist companies or for use as a marketing tool in combination with other major existing natural fibres or existing or soon to become available artificial and synthetic fibres or filaments, within the polyester, polyamide, polypropylene, polyolefin, acrylic, acetate and aramide families. The use of bio-mass as a basis for fibre production will become economically feasible too, although by the end of the period under consideration, it will not yet have had a substantial impact upon the situation described above. Water resources too will be under severe pressure. This will impact directly upon the cost of dyeing and finishing processes and make even more acute the need for constant additional investment and innovation in waste water recycling and depollution, or in low or no-water technologies (digital printing, finishing). These additional costs will pose serious problems in particular for smaller companies operating in an area which will remain one of the key elements for quality and innovative production within the EU. Virtually all of wool scouring activity has migrated out of the EU precisely because of these environmental cost pressures even before the year 2000. On the other hand, as a similar phenomenon hits other producers and competitors around the world, producers inside Europe could well enjoy a relative advantage as a result of their long experience in coming to terms with such costs and the use of the technology associated with them. Chemical usage worldwide will be under ever-increasing scrutiny (REACH in the EU) and industry everywhere will be under pressure to demonstrate that it understands its own responsibilities and takes them seriously, that it is not using chemicals which could pose a risk to its workers, nor to those who purchase its products, nor in the form of release to soil,


air or water. Here one has to make the assumption that any European regulations will also apply to goods imported from outside the EU, and that there are adequate provisions in place for border controls to be effective. This is no more and no less than the approach taken by all of the EU’s international competitors, but it is not yet the case as far as the European Union itself is concerned. There is room for doubt today as to whether the West, and Europe in particular, will be able to maintain its technological lead, in those areas in which it may claim to possess such a lead. The assumption here needs to be made that in textiles and clothing at least the strength and know-how of current European machinery makers and applications providers in co-operation with state-of-the-art producers will ensure that this is the case within the time-frame under consideration. Even though resultant new machinery will be exported abroad, as has always been the case in the past, more productive machinery will nonetheless mean that the labour component globally will become somewhat less important in the overall cost of a product, especially when one links to the technology itself the increased prices of energy, transport, environmental constraints and others. In this respect the higher wage economies will see some reduction in the wage-cost handicaps they are currently facing. The consumer here may have substantial influence. Will he/she over the next few years become increasingly aware of the efforts which EU industry has to make to provide him or her with the clean product he or she would prefer? Will this same awareness apply in terms of ethical conditions of employment and the respect of the core labour standards of the ILO? Or will he/she generally continue to buy purely on price? The jury is still out and will remain out for some time on that broad issue, but in all logic there ought indeed to be a greater consumer awareness fostered in part by increased awareness concerning energy prices, water scarcity, and chemical safety, which will force Corporate Social Responsibility too and as a whole up the political agenda. It is noteworthy here too that the extremer views of a number of NGOs which have hardly helped the EU textile and clothing industry in the past now seem to have reached their peak and that their influence may well have declined by 2020. In the meantime, today’s largest distributors and retailers will have increased their overall physical market share across the enlarged EU, as a result of substantial expansion into countries and regions where they had been little present until well after 2004 enlargement, even if in one or other country they will have achieved saturation and may indeed have somewhat scaled back their presence. Alongside this enhanced market share will come increasing scrutiny from public administrations, as suppliers, initially in the food and drinks field, voice complaints as to the price pressures which are placed upon them, and smaller retailers and their representatives raise the spectre of a society without its independent corner shop. This scrutiny and awareness can be expected to lead to even greater efforts on the part of large retailers to provide the most benevolent image of themselves. As a result, there may well be opportunities for more EU products too to be made available through those channels, and this in turn might afford a further breathing space for smaller independent retailers. The internet together with other IT solutions also offers both a challenge and an opportunity for industry in terms of market transparency, data transmission, supply chain management, and shorter product lifecycles – the latter being a necessary element if producer and retailer


alike are to avoid loss of revenue resulting from overstocking and sales at knock-down prices. In 2006, the textiles and clothing industry is not best placed to take advantage of these opportunities in its fragmented state; but if they were to be seized upon enthusiastically and immediately, they do offer real possibilities for co-operation into an increasingly competitive future, where access to credit, available through a smaller number of large banking players will become substantially more difficult to obtain. E-business will offer ever greater opportunities for virtual as opposed to physical shopping, increasing overall retail competition and putting pressure upon the less efficient or the non-specialist. It is here again that prospects for EU-manufactured or branded textiles or apparel can benefit, if their producers are prepared to take up the challenge. Awareness of the sensitive background issues listed above will be funnelled around the world to an even greater extent in the next ten years as an even greater percentage of the world’s population becomes internet literate and is in a position to obtain a diversity of information to which it had no previous access.

C. THE EU TEXTILE AND CLOTHING INDUSTRY ITSELF THE VISION A simpleton might suggest that the future of the textile and clothing industry in the EU is sombre in the extreme, that the coming years will see the clothing industry wiped out completely as the Asian exporters move ever forward and the Pan Euro Med area seems unable to achieve the expectations placed upon it, that this will leave large numbers of small and medium-sized European companies in the textile sector with no clothing customers and therefore no future. The same simpleton might also suggest that competition too will grow in the non-apparel sector and that carpets and other interior textiles will be subject to the same ferocious pressures which had previously hit the apparel sector, whilst even in the technical textiles arena China, South Korea and others will have achieved parity or even overtaken the developed world, and that the industry as a whole will be reduced to a limited number of large brand owners – themselves under added pressure from counterfeiting and piracy as that phenomenon continues to run unchecked – and a few highly specialised smaller employers. This picture would be one which stems from an overall assessment of future developments which offer little hope to any sector of European manufacturing. It suggests that Europe will have become more akin to an industrial desert with a few small oases remaining in the form of pockets of resistance to globalisation. Such a picture is pessimistic in the extreme; it would be unacceptable to Europe as a whole, in both the economic, political and social context. It would assume the failure of the re-focussed “jobs and growth” Lisbon Agenda, and describe a scenario in which dynamism and innovation will have given way to decay and stultification. There are many objective reasons to suggest that this will not be the case. Indeed, in this context it is important to note that in volume terms in the first year of full liberalisation of imports after the end of the ATC (the WTO Agreement on Textiles and Clothing), imports overall grew by only 4.2% in volume in textiles and clothing together, as compared to figures for the preceding twelve months. In addition, their growth in value was slightly in excess of 5% - surprising figures in volume terms - whilst also demonstrating that, overall, import


prices did not plummet. (The volume figure could no doubt have been somewhat higher and the value percentage somewhat lower in the absence of the June 2005 agreement with China which limited imports until end-2007 in ten product categories). Moreover, this limited growth needs to be seen too, quite evidently, in the light of poor economic performance and uncertain consumer demand across the Euro-zone. Yet it does nonetheless highlight the fact that the surge in imports at greatly reduced prices from those Asian countries previously under quota, which the more pessimistic had predicted to be inevitable, did not occur, and that only India and China can be said to have been major beneficiaries of liberalised import trade in textiles and clothing. At the same time and in spite of a relatively strong Euro in US dollar terms, EU-25 exports were largely able to hold their own at €36 billion in 2005. Does this not prove that the EU industry as a whole is stronger than one might have thought in June 2005, and that the membership of Bulgaria, Romania and Turkey will in fact lend further competitive strength to the industry as it benefits from the skills and much lower wage costs of the former, and the overall expertise of the latter, already in a Customs Union with the European Union? Moreover, the Commission itself seems to forecast improved economic sentiment with growth in excess of 2% in the years 2006 and 2007, whilst increased demand at consumer level for household textiles would appear to offer growth opportunities for quality producers in this area. In the light of the above statements, where then may one expect the European textile and clothing industry to be as it moves towards a 2020 horizon? The suppositions made here have to be based upon the hypothesis that the Commission and national administrations and regional authorities will be prepared to play their full part, that pragmatic considerations will take precedence over ideology, and that even the industry itself which will need to be the driving force for change, accepts that there will be very few cases where sector-specific plans or projects will prove possible. Nonetheless, in many cases, it should also be clear that horizontal action of a determined nature to benefit the whole of manufacturing can and must also by definition include the textiles and clothing sector, and that there is no reason to suppose that it will be excluded in any way from such benefits. The first concrete, albeit general, point to be made is that international trade will continue to grow, flowing both outwards and inwards, and that as a result the EU textiles and clothing industry will have to become leaner and meaner, enjoying higher productivity from a much reduced workforce, with a somewhat greater proportion of its turnover dedicated to exports. These exports will essentially consist of high quality or high fashion items in which Europe will retain design and distribution leadership on its domestic market, whilst at the same time benefiting from enhanced infrastructures, production and distribution networks, in part European owned, in many of the major population centres of the planet, in co-operation with and as part of the growth on those markets of major European retailers and distributors. These exports will also consist of an increasing range of “technical” items for use within newly created transport and infrastructure systems around the world, together with protective wear and goods for medical purposes. The actual level of consumption, a partdeterminant of the size of the industry, will naturally be dependent to a significant effect upon overall economic growth, the strength of the Euro and the consumer “feel good factor”. The fragmented supply chain The final years of import restraints under the ATC were characterised by an industry structure little changed from that of the previous century: an industry employing some 2.5


million people in more than 170.000 companies: average number of employees per company: 15. When quotas were finally dismantled in January 2005, the immediate result in Year 1 in company failures and job losses was bad enough but much less than might have been expected – 164.000 jobs in the year 2005. Faced with this situation, a large number of firms have now and will increasingly in the future have to begin to co-operate in a more structured manner, for the most part voluntarily, although on occasions for lack of alternatives, moving their co-operation forward from mere supplier-customer relationships to more organic links, more focused innovation and development efforts, leading over the period to 2010 to the formation of substantially larger company groups, having the essential critical mass and credible business plans to convince credit institutions that these groups are indeed worthy of support. The same types of phenomena will occur horizontally as well as vertically with similarly encouraging results. Here there is no one size fits all solution. Many companies will accelerate their networking with other smaller operations and engineer multiple mergers in the same locality; others will do so further afield as the phenomenon of SME internationalisation becomes more widespread. Within the still fragmented supply chain, those companies that exploit standardisation opportunities will enjoy a head start over their rivals. Implementation of standards should lead to reductions in costs, an enhancement of quality, and a reduction of the risks they face – both technological and commercial. Standards implementation, particularly in the field of ICT (Tex-Weave) will enable products, processes, systems and services to be more easily designed, developed, manufactured, specified, purchased and understood. These objectives will be more rapidly and easily achieved as a greater number of Federations representing the industry at national level take a more active role in the standardisation process on behalf of their member-companies. A number of highly specialised producers of yarn, finished fabrics and end-products will be able to survive in particular niches, but the overall number of companies may be expected to be substantially reduced, and the average number of employees per company will significantly increase. Larger employee numbers and increased turnover will enable those companies to obtain better access to credit and also to make provision for enhanced training and investment in the latest technology. Textiles in the post-quota world: the technology and innovation challenge The realisation in 2000 that overall Europe was lagging behind other developed economies in innovation and in % of GDP devoted to research and development, coupled too with the recognition that the EU economy might be overhauled by major developing (emerging) nations for those same reasons, prompted the Commission to encourage industries to establish Technology Platforms and to develop Strategic Research Agendas. In textile and clothing terms these initiatives have coincided with the end of the quota period, which has forced companies to think over and beyond trade defence instruments as a means of ensuring their longer-term survival and security. The resultant Strategic Research Agenda which saw the light of day in 2006 would normally be expected to be completed and fully implemented by 2020, since the bulk of its objectives lie within the scope of FP7 – 2007 to 2013. The Platform is based on three essential pillars: • • •

From commodities to specialty products New Textile Applications From Mass Production to Customisation


In each of these three areas the next few years will be decisive. They may not prevent further job losses across the industry as a whole. They will however, if successful, stabilise the position for a significant number of companies in the following ways: The use of new technologies, fibres and processes in functional, innovative ways – this innovation being constant rather than spasmodic – in growing partnerships with machine, machine tool and chemicals manufacturers, and in limited but potential growth markets to which foreign competition is still much less well adapted, coupled with greater speed, flexibility, resource efficiency and quality control, offers clear opportunities for companies who have properly researched the market and found the niches in such fields where they can develop and expand. At the same time there will undoubtedly be a growth in new textile or fibre applications in areas outside the more traditional apparel and interior end-uses. These already represented up to 40% of textile activity in a number of member-states by the year 2005, and may be expected to continue to expand over the next decade. (Examples of these relate to composites for aircraft wings, lightweight non-metal components for motor vehicles, medical uses, insulation for buildings, heavy duty yarns, fabrics and non-wovens for transport infrastructures, land reclamation, artificial sports surfaces, together with innovative and functional applications in protective wear, and many others). As in other areas of manufacture, the successful companies will be those which make sure that they innovate uninterruptedly, since those who do not will be rapidly overtaken by foreign producers, and pushed out of the market place. In the more traditional apparel areas, too, the move towards mass customisation, which has so far been very slow to take off, already provides apparel companies in particular with an opportunity to offer the consumer a prompt, personally tailored product in the fabric of his choice, in a style chosen through the virtual try-on technology, which must now become widespread. The two significant results of this development, linked to the automation of apparel manufacture described below, will be that the EU is placed in a much better position for geographic and speed of delivery reasons to manufacture the finished goods on its own territory, and use for that purpose fabrics which themselves have been woven in the EU. Overall this will not halt imports of cheaper commodity clothing but it will provide European manufacturers with an opportunity to pursue their own manufacturing along a complete and profitable pipeline within the EU, and thus offer the consumer a genuinely wide range of choices for a modest premium. Apparel – the technological breakthrough Even after the end of the quota period in 2005, the textile industry of the EU still generated an overall surplus of exports over imports. This can in large part be attributed to the fact that the automation of spinning and weaving which had occurred over the period since 1970 had removed the labour cost handicap from the industry, and which, allied to the innovative and design capabilities of Europe right along the textile manufacturing pipeline, has gone some way, under normal trading conditions, to correct even greater potential imbalances. It is a moot point here as to what the extent of that export surplus might have been, had earlier WTO and GATT Rounds delivered the open markets the industry had sought. The most revolutionary development in apparel manufacture is set to occur in the first decade of the 21st century. The LEAPFROG project, if successful, will finally deliver automation in the arena of clothing manufacture, together with widespread dissemination


and demonstrator activities which will enable large numbers of garment-manufacturers where they still remain, and in particular in the new member-states and the southern parts of Europe, to invest and produce using the Leapfrog technology. At a stroke this can remove the wage-cost advantage from which many Asian (and other) nations have benefited for so long, and by the end of the second decade have created a perceptible shift back towards increased volumes of garment production within the EU-25+. This shift in turn will help to sustain demand for yarn and fabric which has been spun and woven internally in the EU. Such a success would hold out every prospect of further growth in export markets too, as the fault-free products emerging from the production line, their European reputation intact, find favour with increasing numbers of consumers across the world, even if the technology itself, for obvious reasons, would also find markets outside Europe. The use of this technology also links directly to mass customisation described in the previous section. These benefits will however only work to full effect if Europe has in place a general economic framework and policies which do not hamper its international competitiveness. Fashion and image Increasing international sophistication and the use of more “creative” machinery will over the years tend to further narrow the image gap between Europe’s fashion industry and that of its major N. and S. American and Asian competitors, aided in that context by ever greater access to satellite TV programmes in particular from English and other European language broadcasters in Asia, North America and Brazil, creating periodic fashion crazes for example for saris, Brazilian beach wear, and traditional/imperial Chinese-styled silks and brocades. Nonetheless, Europe as a whole can and must retain its image as a world fashion leader. The great French and Italian fashion houses in particular have continued to achieve worldwide success and notoriety, and the annual fashion weeks in major European capitals have fostered this ongoing success. In high-end apparel products for outerwear and underwear alike, fashion has swung from the simple to the ultra-complicated and back again, with the “little black dress” remaining the elegant centrepiece of most middle-class feminine wardrobes. There is little foreseeable likelihood of major change in this context. However, linked to the growing take-up of mass-customised goods (see above), and B2C trade on the internet, there will be more competition than ever before in a growing higher end market segment, where quality and fit, linked to the need for “immediate” delivery, will become an ever more significant element in determining the consumer’s choice and where the consumer him- or herself will be prepared to pay a premium for quality, fit and customisation. As a result manufacture within the EU could well consolidate, albeit at a lower level than was the case at the turn of the century, and the less numerous jobs it provides will be more highly-skilled, more stable and better paid. In tandem with the above, Europe can and must continue to enjoy a lead in terms of flair and creativity. Its designers must remain among the brightest stars in the international firmament, wherever they are working along the apparel pipeline (design, innovation, creativity apply to the production of yarns, fabrics, both woven and knitted, just as much as they do to the final consumer article); but, as in other areas of innovation, this lead can only be maintained if collections are renewed on a permanent basis. In this context, the work of the newly created “Fashion Forum” can provide producers with valuable insight into consumer choice, and offer independent fashion retailers further


opportunities to communicate their needs to European suppliers. Here, too, the European sporting goods sector has continued to show strong growth and global leadership. An ever greater awareness of the need to maintain, if not extend the “creativity” lead, on the part of companies in the industry, means that whilst internet commerce and masscustomisation will help to stabilise EU production, there will be a relative decline in the number of fashion fairs, as exhibitors and visitors find it more economic to concentrate on a limited number of major European events. Within that reduced number, the issue of intellectual property rights has to be faced head on and progress in respect of IPR as a whole must be achieved in a number of important fields: Intellectual Property Rights – the rule of law to replace the law of the jungle The preceding paragraphs have clearly demonstrated that in future the EU textile and clothing industry will continue to rely upon innovation and creativity. This is needed in the more traditional apparel and interior textiles areas, just as much as it is in the new applications and specialty products fields. Common to both, and common to many other European activities, is the need for effective protection of Intellectual Property Rights. These needs are clearly identified as being three-fold: firstly, the protection of those rights within the boundaries of the EU itself; secondly, their protection at the frontiers of the EU; and finally, but equally importantly, their protection on the export markets of EU producers. 2005 saw the beginning of a more widespread recognition of the scale of the problem and of its impact upon jobs and the economy of the EU as a whole. This recognition beyond the obvious – and essential – concerns of health and safety has begun to extend to the protection within textiles and clothing not merely of brands but also of textile designs. A series of measures taken by EU authorities in close co-operation with member-states and rights holders, or by rights holders themselves, and which may be summarised as follows will further help to stem this flow: • The spread of national anti-counterfeiting cells using a common data base and the elaboration between the industry and the authorities of a clear action programme, setting out the role of each stakeholder and the deadlines to be met. • The implementation of Article 25.2 of the TRIPS agreement in a growing number of WTO member countries. • The control of counterfeiting at trade fairs, resulting in part from the smaller number of the latter and the growth of codes of ethics for exhibitors. • Improved customs procedures, awareness seminars for police, customs authorities and the judiciary, etc., which were also part of the recommendations of the June 30th 2004 report of the High Level Group. Retailers and distributors insist that any measure taken needs to be appropriate, necessary and proportionate. • The pursuit and extension of different EU initiatives already taken on IPR enforcement vis-à-vis two third countries (People’s Republic of China and Russia) and a new common IPR initiative launched between the EU and the USA in November 2005. • Added emphasis, where feasible, on product branding by manufacturers as a simpler form of protection than that of registering a multiplicity of individual designs and models Even if all of the above can be satisfactorily carried out, the counterfeiting and piracy phenomenon will of course not be wiped out, but it might well be reduced to levels which no longer threaten the very existence of companies, and thus offer them a reasonable


guarantee that they can produce, sell and export with a degree of certainty and protection, provided they themselves take proper precautions. Constant vigilance on the part of the authorities and rights holders will remain crucial if the progress achieved is not to become null and void. The expected growth of “e-commerce” counterfeiting is a field to which proper attention will need to be given too. Skills and training – tackling the image problem Reference has been made earlier in this text to the fact that the passing of the years will see a raised awareness of the importance of manufacturing to the EU, whether in textiles and clothing as such or in other and wider areas of activity. A number of programmes are set to be launched at European and national level to build upon this growing awareness, which are intended to stimulate a gradual but nonetheless perceptible move in favour of blue collar work in textile and clothing manufacturing plants; this would be further fostered by a clothing technology breakthrough, and the changed perception of textiles and clothing as no longer being part of those dark satanic mills. Such developments would in any case make employment more attractive and the quality of the intake in a more stable environment will improve as a result. The enhanced Europeanisation of the continent, the corresponding spread of genuine language skills as from primary school level may be expected to facilitate the further development of specialised training institutes (and universities), catering for a multinational student intake and capable as a result of sustaining expertise in areas where demand may be inadequate to justify courses in several EU countries. Internet-based systems too will encourage life-long learning and make the work force more mobile. Education as a whole will foster multidisciplinary training, adding to this mobility both within and outside the textiles and clothing industry. Paradoxically, increased mobility will put increased pressure upon companies at all levels and all along the pipeline through to distribution to offer improved social conditions. Such an achievement would in itself create a virtuous circle which could be further enhanced if industry leaders are careful to make the right public pronouncements about the future of their industry, and to accept that management too must bear its share of responsibility when things may not go as well as one might wish. Enhanced environmental and social standardisation Just as the twenty years preceding the end of the twentieth century had seen a move in textiles away from basic shop floor employment towards automation, quality surveillance and laboratory checks, so the early years of the 21st century can be expected to witness a different form of movement, with workers and executives concentrating ever more attention on environmental correctness, aided by the internationalisation of environmental and social standards. These latter two elements, taken in conjunction with a higher quality intake of employee, would be instrumental in providing a more level international playing field than has been the case for many years. Even in the latter part of the twentieth century, it would have been unthinkable for heavyduty and high quality “technical” textiles to be used in road construction, air bag manufacture, and for medical purposes, among many others, without the producer having to adhere to the strictest possible standards. Precisely in the area of technical textiles, applications which make an active contribution towards environmental protection form an ever increasing part. Applications range from the


sealing of disposal sites to filter systems for the precipitation of dust. In the wake of increasing environmental consciousness on the part of consumers as well as growing legal requirements in the environmental sector, “eco textiles” thus play a great role, not only in the sense of their environmental usefulness but also with regard to the competitiveness of the branch. At the same time, one must stress the positive role of the European textile and clothing industry with a view to environmental aspects in international cooperation and foreign investments. European investments often lead to improvement in the local environmental situation through know-how and technology transfer as well as a sharpening of consumer consciousness in countries with lax standards. Consequently, this leads to a growing recognition and thus competitiveness of European textile products which are regarded worldwide as “safe and clean” products. In the environmental field, a similar move has been visible too in the interior textiles area where flammability, mothproofing and the use of “dangerous” dyestuffs are concerned. This movement will extend in scope over the years to cover most forms of apparel too, with manufacturers, traders and retailers coming under ever greater pressure to conform to new environmental constraints (REACH in particular) and at the same time to demonstrate clearly to the public that their goods are not harmful to the environment. This movement would at the very least ensure that all those competing for a share of the European market would need to comply with such requirements. At the same time the public as a whole may well become increasingly aware of the extent to which goods in European shops might have been produced under either fair or abusive social conditions. As stated earlier, the jury is still out on this issue, which would imply major additional efforts of the whole supply chain to have their products manufactured under social conditions compatible with the core labour standards of the International Labour Organisation (ILO). Whilst this awareness must be kept in perspective, since it very obviously would not imply that wage rates and social charges involved in the manufacture of articles elsewhere would become much closer to those of the EU, it will contribute to a narrowing of the social gap, and a significant reduction in abuse. The practice of genuine and credible Corporate Social Responsibility along the textile and apparel supply chain can therefore be expected to become a more important factor over the period under consideration. It will be the role of all stakeholders to ensure that real efforts to employ workers to produce goods in the textiles and clothing arena under socially and environmentally decent conditions, wherever their place of work, should be applauded. The Commission and member-states will still have a major role to play within bodies such as WTO and ILO, and on a bilateral basis (see also reference to GSP+ above). In conclusion, the vision of the EU textile and clothing industry presented above is both realistic and credible. More importantly, given the right level of commitment by the industry itself and proper co-operation from and within the whole pipeline, it is achievable. As already stated, it also pre-supposes that the European Commission, member-states and local or regional authorities will play their full part too. It is on that basis, and in the light of the unfinished business itemised in the second part of this report, that the High Level Group makes a series of recommendations in the next and final section of the present text. For reasons of clarity and comparison, these recommendations are grouped in the same order as was the case in the original report of 30th June 2004.

CHAPTER 4 - RECOMMENDATIONS FOR FURTHER ACTION BY THE HIGH LEVEL GROUP


1) COMPETITIVENESS AND INTERNAL REGULATORY AND MARKET ISSUES With regard to the REACH proposal, all stakeholders should give careful consideration as to the most effective and appropriate manner in which any discrimination as between European-manufactured articles and those imported from outside the EU can effectively be removed. They also recommend that the public authorities should explore the possibility of providing tools for SMEs, inside the textiles industry and in other sectors, to enable them to come rapidly to terms with the requirements of the new chemical policy legislation. Where access to credit is concerned, the Group has noted that a significant part of the problem lies in the poor image the industry as a whole presents to the public at large and to major credit institutions in particular. There is no simple and immediate answer to this question, but there can be little doubt that one part of the solution lies in the hands of the industry itself. The High Level Group therefore recommends that industry leaders take every opportunity to present the numerous success stories from within the industry on a regular basis in the most positive manner possible, and that in this context, if meetings of the Group itself take place, a common platform might be provided for all major stakeholders to present an agreed joint position to the media. The issue of image must also be linked very closely to that of education and media pools for which a project is being drafted, and whose early realization must now become a matter of priority. Still in the context of internal competitiveness, and in the light of the description of the fragmented supply chain set out in the Vision chapter of this report, and of the problems that this situation also creates in relation to access to credit, the High Level Group strongly recommends that • Small and medium sized companies, whether on a horizontal or vertical (supplier to customer) basis should be encouraged to seek synergies which will enable them over time to create the necessary critical mass to overcome credit difficulties, and where appropriate to diversify their production. • Much greater attention should be paid to standardisation activity within national textile and clothing industry federations on behalf of their members, in order to achieve the benefits outlined in the Vision chapter. Standardisation bodies, in particular CEN should in their turn increase the emphasis they place upon standardisation as a tool to benefit EU manufacturing. Industry stakeholders are in the process of ascertaining priority areas for such standardisation. The Group also recommends that the marketing policy concept be pursued, and that in this context, the Fashion Forum, established as a result of the June 2004 report, intensify its activities, and, provided that experience obtained in the apparel field can be seen to be positive, establish a similar structure under the appropriate industry leadership in respect of carpets and interior textiles. 2) EDUCATION, TRAINING AND EMPLOYMENT The need for a highly skilled work force at all levels has been stressed time and time again, both during the High Level Group process itself, as well as in numerous public declarations by Commission, national administrations and other major industry stakeholders. In more concrete terms, this means that efforts need now to be accelerated to complete and/or implement fully the recommendations of the June 2004 report which cover:


• the establishment of national and European “Observatories” for training and employment (work in progress); • the organisation, carrying out and co-coordinating of training at all levels in the industry (various initiatives taken or completed e.g. Euro-TT and VITA at European level); • the creation of media/ information pools to provide teachers and the general public with user-friendly material to make the industry more widely known to the public at large, to potential recruits to the industry, and to further boost its image (draft project prepared); • surveys to ensure a better match between supply and demand for training, and the collection of information on training programmes, current projects and funding availabilities; • the development of common qualification standards (work in progress); and • the implementation of reconversion and classification units. At the same time, as universities and other higher education institutions are encouraged to develop European degrees as instanced in the June 30th 2004 report, they should now be encouraged, in close co-operation with industry, to dovetail the courses they offer at present, and thus enable the widest possible range of needed textile and clothing related studies to remain available across the European Union as a whole, to the benefit, first and foremost, of those students who will be seeking future employment in the industry, the research community or the educational institutions within the EU itself. In this latter respect, the High Level Group requests the recently created Technology Platform through its horizontal Education Group, which comprises representatives of industry, the Universities and similar bodies, to make proposals to this effect, and to seek the agreement of a group of higher education bodies to undertake pilot schemes. For their part, and in concert, industry stakeholders intend to pursue and strengthen their partnership in the sectoral social dialogue context, in order to reinforce and stimulate member companies and their employees to take further initiatives in the area of Corporate Social Responsibility. They recommend that similar initiatives be launched between employers and trades unions in major competitor countries of the EU, confirm their willingness to exchange experiences with social partners in those countries, and request that the European Commission continues providing its full support for such endeavours. In the same context they request that the Commission pursue its policy to promote and support the establishment and application of minimum social, environmental and ethical rules for manufacturing and trade in all countries. 3) INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHTS The High Level Group has taken note of the initiatives taken by the Commission and by member-states which have pushed Intellectual Property Rights issues further up the European Agenda over the past two years. It is for this reason that the Group now wishes to present in a modified form those elements of the June 2004 recommendations which remain to be fulfilled: • The elaboration between the industry and the authorities of a clear action programme, setting out the role of each stakeholder and the deadlines to be met to strengthen protection against counterfeiting. • In the context of the WTO TRIPs agreement, and, more particularly in the context of its Article 25.2, to undertake a campaign among WTO members in the developing world to persuade them that it is also in their own interests to adopt and


implement legislation which is in conformity with the above agreement, as a protection for companies on their home territory which are themselves rights holders. • Capacity building/technical assistance to authorities in countries where IPR infringements mainly happen, possibly in the framework of public-private partnerships (industry partners sponsoring measures or sending experts). • To further improve an existing user-friendly web-site on IPR to provide easy access for smaller companies concerning how to protect their rights nationally, at EU and international level. In this respect the IPR Help Desk in its present form could further improve the services it provides. • To organize seminars across the EU involving rights holders, small and mediumsized companies, police and customs authorities and the judiciary in presence of industry and Commission experts, in order to strengthen and prolong any existing awareness raising initiatives. In addition to these concepts arising from the previous report, the Group also recommends that industry stakeholders explore the possibility of extending across the whole of the EU: • Codes of ethics to be observed by all exhibitors at fairs and similar events, requiring companies to commit themselves not to copy others’ models or designs; • The feasibility of branding a larger volume of articles as a simpler and more effective means of protecting IPR; • the EU to enhance co-operation with third countries on the enforcement of IPR and take joint awareness-raising and enforcement initiatives, wherever this is possible; • Anti-counterfeiting cells of the kind which exist on a multi-sectoral basis in e.g. Belgium and Germany which, using a combination of investigative, and legal skills, in combination with customs and police authorities, have had considerable success in increasing levels of seizures and cases brought to court ; and finally • To continue use every possible means of promoting ever greater awareness inside and outside the frontiers of the European Union and at all levels, including that of the public at large, as to the nature of the problem of infringement of Intellectual Property Rights, and the need to take every possible step to combat it. 4) REGIONAL ASPECTS In the light of the positive results achieved in a number of textile/clothing regions as a result of the early implementation of local strategic plans, the High Level Group considers that greater publicity should be given to the outcome of such strategic plans, and that wherever possible, they should be used as a basis to convince other textile/clothing regions of the intrinsic value of the establishment of such plans. In a similar vein, and in spite of the Commission and member-states’ known position on a sectoral approach, it is believed that there are good reasons to re-examine the possibility of a sectoral approach to certain of the difficulties faced by regions or localities with strong textile/clothing concentrations and which may have been more severely hit by the immediate post-quota period than others. 5) RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT, INNOVATION Over the period since June 2004, and as has been seen above, most of the recommendations of the High Level Group have in fact been implemented. One area in


which this had not occurred, however, was in relation to the definition of what constitutes non-technological innovation, which, in parallel with the comments already made above concerning Intellectual Property Rights, is crucial for the future well-being of the industry. As already noted in that part of this report related to unfinished business some account appears now to have been taken of these needs. Arising from the implementation of the earlier recommendations, the Group believes that it is highly desirable that the Commission and all other decision-making bodies for Framework Programme 7 and the CIP should take careful note of the textile and clothing industry’s recommendations as embodied in its June 2006 Strategic Research Agenda, a direct result of the creation of the Textile and Clothing Technology Platform. This Agenda not only pinpoints the needs of the industry in research and development terms over the next decade, but also points to areas in which the access to funding of SMEs can be substantially improved. The High Level Group commends the work carried out jointly by industry, academia and research institutes in putting together this Strategic Research Agenda, and recommends that it be widely disseminated among all stakeholders. It also commends the pioneering initiative of the Textiles and Clothing Platform in signing in May 2006 a ground-breaking agreement with the machinery industry platform, Manufuture, to form a basis for ongoing collaboration through Manutex. It recommends that the industry examine closely which other potential research partners might exist at European level, and requests that the Textiles and Clothing Platform should now seek to identify potential flagship projects for the industry. Finally, in relation to Research and Development and Innovation, the High Level Group calls upon all parties involved, from manufacturer to retailer, to lose no further time in moving towards the mass-customisation of apparel products. The technology exists, but is being inadequately exploited by producers and retailers, and this, in turn, prevents the final consumer from obtaining access to its benefits. 6) TRADE POLICY As already indicated earlier in this report, certain of the trade policy elements of the June 2004 recommendations required agreement from parties or authorities outside the EU itself. Nowhere is this more evident than in the context of Market Access and the industry’s search for reciprocal access to third markets for EU exports of textiles and clothing. In the context of the Doha Development Agenda, following the collapse of negotiations in July 2006, any timetable for the effective opening of markets to European exports of textiles and clothing has been put on hold, at least for the present. The High Level Group therefore requests the Commission not to make any unilateral concessions to the emerging (and also textile exporting) nations of the world in future negotiations without obtaining commitments from them that their own textile and clothing tariffs will be reduced to levels comparable to those of the EU. At the same time work must continue to eliminate non-tariff barriers to ensure that those latter obstacles do not hamper genuine market access for EU textile and clothing exporters. At the same time, if there are to be ongoing negotiations on a bilateral basis (Mercosur, GCC, ASEAN) the aim should be to reach zero duties and eliminate non-tariff barriers at one and the same time on both sides, as set out in the June 2004 report. The Commission should also continue to encourage those countries or regions with which it signs Free Trade Agreements to conclude similar agreements with Turkey. Every effort too should be made once again to accelerate the full opening of the markets of our Mediterranean partners to


EU-manufactured exports. In the same zone too, those countries which have yet to do so should be encouraged to sign Free Trade Agreements with each other in order to strengthen south-south regional economic integration and to complete the Euro-Mediterranean Free Trade Area. The implementation of the Market Access Plan, elaborated as a result of the June 2004 report, should continue as a matter of urgency. Finally, it must be underlined that a bilateral strategy for market access remains a second-best solution which is particularly valid for the T/C sector with its internationalised production chain. The need to expand European exports and distribution of European textiles and clothing into third markets also allows synergies to be created between European producers and traders. Benefits will accrue to European producers since existing contacts and contracts, as well as a shared culture and identity, commend European retailers and wholesalers, more than their foreign competitors, as channels of distribution for European textiles and products. The High Level Group therefore expresses its clear commitment to the further liberalisation of distribution services in WTO as well as in regional and bilateral agreements. The application of Trade Defence Instruments contributes to provide industry with a level playing field when faced with cases of unfair trade. In the light of recent cases, DG Trade launched a reflection process in May 2006. Members of the High Level Group expect to take an active part in the abovementioned process and industry and traders alike stress that all procedures undertaken by the Commission and which involve trade defence instruments remain objective, and continue to provide all stakeholders with the necessary predictability and legal certainty, taking into account their intrinsic legal nature4. Undoubtedly there are cases where the desirability for predictability and legal certainty can be met easily and without the need to strike balances between potentially conflicting interests. An example is the Generalised System of preferences (GSP) and second implementing regulation which will enter into force on January 1st 2009. Both producers and traders would benefit if the new system were to be published in the Official Journal by December 2007, thus providing all operators concerned with one year’s advance planning. Finally, and still on the theme of a better reconciliation of producer and trader interests, the High Level Group stresses the importance of a high quality of stakeholder consultations, as evidenced by the HLG itself. The Commission is actively seeking opinions on EU policies and invites stakeholders to take part in shaping European policy by holding regular meetings on a variety of issues in Brussels with European Commissioners, senior officials and negotiators. The objective of this dialogue is to develop a confident working relationship between all interested stakeholders in trade and other policy fields and to ensure that all contributions to EU policy are heard.

CONCLUSION A majority of the recommendations set out in this second report of the High Level Group require action from industry, trades unions and the public authorities, be this at Commission, member-state or regional authority level. For this reason, the High Level Group will discuss 4

AEDT/EuroCommerce/FTA do not agree with the words “remain” and “continue to” of the last sentence and support the following text: “Members of the High Level Group expect to take an active part in the abovementioned process and industry and traders alike stress that all procedures undertaken by the Commission and which involve trade defence instruments be objective and provide all stakeholders with the necessary predictability and legal certainty.”


at its meeting on 18th September how best to ensure an effective follow-up on the new recommendations and review the progress achieved by all parties since the 18th September 2006 meeting.

Annex 1 Members of HIGH LEVEL GROUP

COMMISSIONNERS : Mr. Günter VERHEUGEN

Vice-President of the European Commission (Enterprise & Industry) Member of the European Commission (Trade)

1049 Brussels Belgium

Member of the European Commission (Research) Member of the European Commission (Employment & Social Affairs)

1049 Brussels Belgium 1049 Brussels Belgium

State Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy

10115 Berlin Germany

IT – 00187 Roma 75572 Paris Cedex 12 France

Mr. Manuel PINHO

Italian Ministry of Economic Development Minister-Delegate for Industry Ministry of the Economy, Finance and Industry Ministry of Economy

Mr. Dimitrios SIOUFAS

Minister of Development

Mr. Peter MANDELSON

Mr. Janez POTOCNIK Mr. Vladimir SPIDLA

1049 Brussels Belgium

MINISTERS : Mr. Georg ADAMOWITSCH

Wilhelm

(to be replaced as of 1 September 2006) Mr. Pier Luigi BERSANI Mr. François LOOS

PT – 1050-138 Lisboa Portugal GR – 11526 Athens Greece

MEMBERS OF EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT : Mr. Juan CALABUIG RULL

Member of the European Parliament Spain - PES Mme. Tokia SAIFI Member of the European Parliament France - EPP INDUSTRY REPRESENTATIVES :

1047 Brussels Belgium 1047 Brussels Belgium

Mr. John ACCAS

Hellenic Fabrics

Mr. Bülent BASER

Baser Holding A.S./ITKIB

Mr. Joan CANALS

Pulligan

GR – 546 24 Thessaloniki TR – Istanbul Turkey ES – 08007


Mr. Philip CARDER Mr. John CORRIN

Magee Group CEO of Allied Textiles

Mr. Lucien DEVEAUX

President Union des Industries Textiles

Mr. Emiel DIJKSTRA

FESI – Federation of European Sporting Goods Industry (NIKE) CEO of Falke

Mr. Franz-Peter FALKE

Mr. Jean-François GRIBOMONT Mr. Geoffrey KATZ

Utexbel – Filature & Tissage Coton

Mr. William LAKIN

EDANA - European Disposables And Nonwovens Association EURATEX

Mr. Filiep LIBEERT

EURATEX

Mrs. Elizabeta SANKOWSKA

Polska Izba Odziezowo

Mr. Michele TRONCONI

Vice-President of EURATEX

Barcelona Ireland – Co. Donegal UK - Birstall West Yorkshire WF17 9TB F – 92113 Clichy NL-1213 NH Hilversum D - 57392 Schmallenberg B– 9600 Ronse CH - 1218 Le Grand Saconnex B – 1000 Brussels B – 1000 Brussels PL – 11 400 Ketrzyn I – 21054 Fagnano Olano (Va)

TRADES UNIONS : Mrs. Valeria FEDELI

European Trades Union Federation: Textiles, Clothing and Leather European Trades Union Federation: Textiles, Clothing and Leather

I – 00153 Roma B - 1000 Brussels

Mr. Ferry DEN HOED

FTA – Foreign Trade Association

Mrs. Betty VAN ARENTHALSKRAMER FREHER

AEDT - European Association of Fashion Retailers

NL – 4815 NG Breda B - 1040 Brussels

Dr. Peter BERNERT

EuroCommerce

B-1040 Brussels

ACTE - European Textile Collectivities Association

B- 1210 Brussels

Mr. Patrick ITSCHERT DISTRIBUTION AND RETAIL :

TEXTILE REGIONS: Mr. Jean-Pierre PERDIEU


Anexo II

Reflection Document « ACTE 2007-2013 : a strategic proposal »

ACTE 2007-2013 A strategic proposal

Reflection document for the Extraordinary Assembly in Guimaraes

December 2006


ACTE 2007- 2013: A STRATEGIC PROPOSAL Reflection Document for the Extraordinary Assembly in Guimar達es

Contents 1. Background 2. Objectives of the Reflection Document 3. Why think about ACTE now? 4. What role for ACTE?

32 of 149


1. Background On 13 April 1991, four territorial collectivities with a strong presence of the textile and clothing sector laid the foundations for establishing the European Textile Collectivities Association (ACTE) when they signed the Guimarães Protocol. These four, the Associacão de Municípios do Vale do Ave (Portugal), the Communauté Urbaine de Lille (France), the Intercommunale d’Étude et de Gestion of Hainaut Occidental (Belgium) and the Municipio de Terrassa (Spain), were soon joined by Diputació de Barcelona (Spain) and the IDETA of Tournai (Belgium). At European level, ACTE is one of the first thematic networks that emerged in the early-1990s. The first great European-wide networks of local and regional authorities were the European Council of Municipalities and Regions (1951) and Eurocities (1986). These two organisations were crucial to achieving recognition for territorial collectives in Europe, a process which culminated in 1994 with the establishment of the Committee of the Regions. With a view to increasing its potential for action and its representativeness, ACTE has gradually increased its membership and the geographic area it represents, to the point where the association now has 60 efective members from seven European Union Member States and Croatia, and several adherent members. EVOLUTION OF ACTE MEMBERS 70 60

60 51

Members

50 40

37

30 24

20 15

10 0

27

28

30

41

46

32

16

5 1991 1993 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 Year

ACTE members per country

Belgium 2 Croatia 3

United Kingdom 1 Portugal 1 Spain 27

Poland 4 France 4

Italy 18

33 of 149


Contribution to the ACTE budget per country

Belgium 4%

United Kingdom 3% Croatia 2%

Portugal 3%

Poland 6%

Spain 41%

France 10%

Italy 31%

In 2001, this steadily increasing membership made it necessary to undertake a wideranging process of reflection and exchange of ideas with a view to adapting the association’s statutes to the new circumstances and to ensure ACTE’s continuing existence. To this end, a Reform Commission was set up to draft a Reflection Document, which served as the basis for discussions amongst members. The principal action resulting from this consultation process included extending the mandates of social bodies to three years, redefining the association’s objectives, setting up several ad hoc committees and working groups, establishing representation in Brussels, appointing national coordinators and earmarking part of the ACTE budget for activities launched by the vice-presidencies. Since its establishment, the Association’s activities have centred, mainly, on: lobbying actions, achieving the establishment of the RETEX initiative and the green paper on Community Initiatives, gathering signatures on international trade and the recent participation in the High-Level Group on the Textile and Clothing Industry; actions aimed at awareness-raising and reflection, the organisation of international conferences and seminars and the preparation and management of projects with Community cofinancing, such as RETEX, ADAPT, Article 6 of the ESF, etc. As a European network, ACTE must ensure visibility before European institutions, discussing issues of relevance to members with them. On this point, ACTE’s participation since 2004 in the High-Level Group at the invitation of the European Commission and the association’s leadership of the working group on regional policy in 2004 provide clear evidence of the recognition ACTE has achieved as the representative of textile territories and as a valid interlocutor with the Commission. Moreover, in 2005 the Secretariat launched two new communication instruments: the Newsletter and Infoflash. The aim of these is to improve internal information and communication and to inform all ACTE members about the Secretariat’s activities. Establishing these two information tools also represented an important step towards promoting and raising the profile of the network and its activities. At the last ACTE General Assembly, which took place in Mouscron on 8 July 2006, it was agreed, at the proposal of the Executive Committee, to postpone discussion of new appointments and the mandate plan pending a period of reflection and a search for new objectives and broad consensus. In order to stimulate and provide a lead for debate and reflection, we base our discussion here on the following SWOT analysis:

34 of 149


OPPORTUNITIES O1: Monitoring developments in international trade O2: High-Level Group and European industrial policy in general O3: Similar problems in other industries (potential synergies) O4: Growing awareness in Europe about such subjects as relocation, the relocation of workers (for example, the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund) O5: Recognition of the importance of the manufacturing industry for EU economic growth O6: Structural Funds linked to innovation and mature sectors at risk of relocation O7: Capacity for adaptation in the sector => commitment to new high value added products O8: Interest from possible new members O9: Active participation by adherent members may strengthen the Association O10: New members from candidate (Croatia) and new EU Member States (Poland) => availability of European funds F1: 15 years’ experience F2: Recognition of European institutions F3: Recognition and cooperation with EURATEX and ETUF:TCL F4: Existence of internal and external communication tools (website, Infoflash, Newsletter) and technical expertise F5: Existence of a common denominator amongst members: textile history F6: Great confidence amongst core membership F7: Voluntarist network model STRENGTHS

THREATS A1: Discredit of the textile and clothing industry’s image A2: Drastic downsizing of the industry in European territories and consequent loss of critical mass of interest A3: Adjustment cycle not completed A4: Part of the industry unwilling to change business model

D1: Withdrawal of members that have ceased to be “textile territories” D2:Imbalance amongst vice-presidencies: number of national members and degree of commitment to network activities D3: Lack of resource diversification(dependence on membership fees) D4: Insufficient distribution of tasks D5: Lack of participation / commitment by members D6: Negative aspects linked with the voluntarist network model5 D7: Little rotation of posts, generating certain image of jobs for the boys WEAKNESSES

5

An association which, like ACTE, follows a voluntarist network model has low membership fees and depends mainly on the human resources of its members. Unlike this model, the asociation Eurocities has high fees which allow having an own and professional organisational structur.

35 of 149


2. Objectives of the Reflection Document

Over the 15 years since it was first established, ACTE has ceased to be a “strengthened cooperation” amongst six textile collectives to become a powerful, recognised European association. It is clear that both the internal functioning of the network and the economic, industrial and social situation of members have changed in recent years. For this reason, it is considered necessary to open a broad-ranging process of reflection and exchange of ideas to detect and define new internal and external needs as precisely as possible in order to optimise ACTE’s work in the future. Here we should remember the June 2001 document “Review of the ACTE Statutes and Internal Rules and Regulations”, whose main objective was to provide ideas and possible models for reform of the statutes. This document played an important role in guiding the debate at that time. Taking its lead from that positive experience, this Reflection Document is intended to provide the basis for exchanges of ideas and dialogue amongst all members of the network. Any results this process generates should enjoy the greatest possible legitimacy, and we shall therefore attempt to ensure the fullest, most active participation possible. The objective of this document is to serve as a basis for discussion at the Extraordinary Assembly in Guimarães, both as regards the association itself and its organisational model and possible changes.

3. Why think about ACTE now? Until now, ACTE has provided an excellent platform for cooperation and for defending the interests of European territories, achieving outstanding results. Our Association’s organisation has also shown its capacity to adapt to circumstances, but these have changed, and it is therefore believed that it is convenient to make this reflection at the present time. We consider that several reasons exist that make it necessary to launch wide-ranging debate amongst members about the role our network should play in the future and how it should be organised. After textile quotas ended and international markets were liberalised on 1 January 2005, the economic, industrial and social situation in ACTE member territories has taken substantial change almost to culmination. Moreover, constantly growing membership and the network model adopted requires us to improve mechanisms for participation and to enhance the transparency of ACTE’s activities. Finally, we need to optimise the organisational structure, adapting it not only to the increasing number of members and activities, but also to possible new priorities and spheres of action. The reasons behind these needs are as follows: • • • •

New circumstances in member territories Increasing participation and exchanges amongst members Optimising and strengthening the organisational structure Enhancing our lobbying action


3.1. The new situation in ACTE member territories -

The final liberalisation of the textile trade beginning 1 January 2005 has exacerbated the crisis suffered by part of the European textile production: accelerating relocation processes, job losses and subcontracting outside the EU.

-

The impact of globalisation on the textile industry has forced local and regional authorities to launch industrial restructuring plans to promote alternative sectors and provide specific tools for relocating workers laid off by the industry. In many ACTE territories, the textile industry has lost its leading position to other industrial sectors. Most are no longer “textile territories” in the strictest sense.

-

Regarding the textile industry, ACTE member territories (both public authorities, business agents and other players) respond to the new challenges in different ways: in some, the industry has completely disappeared, whilst others seek to conserve their textile industrial base by adapting it to the new circumstances (products with high value added, R+D+i, business downsizing, internationalisation, etc.).

-

Nowadays, the most accurate definition of ACTE would be a network of territories, whose common denominator is the production know-how of the textile industry, independent of the relative importance the sector might currently have for the economic activity in each territory.

-

There is, then, a greater degree of diversity amongst member territories than 15 years ago, and as a result members’ objectives may be more contradictory than complementary.

3.2. Achieving greater participation and communication from and amongst members -

An association that currently has 60 members and growth potential needs the appropriate mechanisms to enable all members to be active and constantly informed about its activities.

-

By launching two ACTE communication channels, Infoflash and the Newsletter, the Secretariat took an important step towards improving internal communication and enhancing the transparency of the network’s activities. These two instruments, along with the ACTE website, have also helped to raise the profile and the external visibility of the network and its activities.

-

The Secretariat has constantly added to the list of non-ACTE members who receive these publications, and this now stands at more than 200, including representatives from European institutions, the members of the High-Level Group, national, regional and local authorities, chambers of commerce, technology centres, etc.

-

The Secretariat uses Infoflash and the Newsletter to inform members about the main results from Executive Committee meetings, lobbying actions, etc., and to provide them with the minutes of meetings, activities reports, etc. Besides, the two tools are used to disseminate European Union news, to annonce public events at European level and to inform about open calls for proposals.


-

Infoflash and the Newsletter are not communication instruments exclusive to the Secretariat: they belong to all members. In fact, the Newsletter contains a section specifically entitled “Members’ News”.

-

Infoflash is designed as an interactive, reactive communication tool, that is to say, a real-time tool, aimed at strengthening the network’s internal activities. Nonetheless, we note that few ACTE members consider it as a means of sharing their ideas, policies and regional and local initiatives with others. Infoflash is, therefore, not used as a working tool.

Type of information disseminated by infoflash in 2006 Notices of conferences and calls for proposals 15%

Partner searches for projects 5%

New s from ACTE members 15%

New s from the European Union 44%

ACTE new s 25%

-

Before the publication of each Newsletter, the Secretariat sends an Infoflash to all members, inviting them to contribute their news. Unfortunately, the response from members generally tends to be rather poor.

-

The ACTE website (http://www.acte.net/) is the association’s basic external presentation tool. All ACTE activities are announced on the site, with links to them from the homepage, constantly updated by the Secretariat. Users have the possibility to access agendas and programmes for meetings and conferences, as well as other useful documents. All ACTE declarations have also been posted on the site, as well as summaries of the transnational projects that ACTE or its members have submitted in recent years. Visits to www.acte.net Period July-November 2006 3000

2628

2500

2145

2000 1526

1500

1352 1068

1000 500 0 July

August

September

October

November


Daily average of visits to www.acte.net Period July-November 2006

90 80

79,8

83,9

76,6

70 60 50

49,4 44,1

40 30 20 10 0 July

August

September

October

November

-

ACTE has currently two working groups: the working group on development cooperation and the working group on textile museums. Up to now, these working groups had difficulties to advance in their activities.

-

ACTE currently has 14 adherent members. We note that to date, these nonterritorial organisations have played a secondary role in the network’s actitivities.

3.3. Optimising and strengthening the organisational structure It is important to optimise the ACTE organisational structure, adapting it to the needs generated by increasing membership, activities and services. -

There is a great imbalance amongst the vice-presidencies as regards both number of national members and their degree of commitment to the network’s activities. There would appear to be a certain relation between ACTE’s “success” in some countries and the proactive participation of the respective vice-presidency. This is also true with regard to national coordinators, whose technical support work is essential for furthering the network’s activities at national level.

-

We can therefore say that the decentralised model that was originally designed for ACTE has not, generally speaking, worked as well as was hoped.

-

The ACTE Executive Committee, which meets three times a year, undisputedly plays an important role within the organisation. However, it sometimes seems to be a “closed club”, as its discussions and activities are not always fully transparent to “ordinary” members of our association. Furthermore, the limited time of these meetings impede to have a profound debate of the strategic lines of the association.

-

The ACTE General Assembly, which takes place once a year, should provide an arena for all members to meet and discuss different issues. However, the number of participants has been disappointing in recent years. These meetings are not very interactive and serve, above all, to inform about Executive Committee decisions and proposals. The participants at the international conferences that are


generally organised parallel to the General Assembly are, for the most part, ACTE members. 3.4. Strengthening our lobbying action -

We understand the ACTE members are interested in having an influential interlocutor to the European institutions to help achieve specific political results and access to Community funds by submitting specific transnational projects.

-

It is indisputable that ACTE is recognised by European institutions, the main stakeholders at European level and, in certain cases, national and regional governments and agents. This recognition is an important achievement, the fruit of years of work.

-

This influence probably reached its maximum level with our active participation in the High-Level Group and at the conference on “Managing Change in the Textile and Clothing Industry”, organised by the European Commission on April 25, sharing a table with EURATEX and ETUF: TCL.

-

It is important, on the subject of this recognition, to later gauge how far our demands are met and whether we have made the most of these opportunities. We should make this evaluation with a view to improving our lobbying action where possible, in order to achieve the greatest possible impact.

-

It is also considered that this important work should also be carried out at national level. Some vice-presidencies have achieved similar levels of recognition from their central and regional governments; we believe that there is still considerable room for improvement.

4. What role for ACTE?

4.1. The new situation in ACTE member territories As we have noted, ACTE and its member territories have changed greatly over the fifteen years since the association was first established. We feel that the moment has now come to reflect on the place our network should occupy in the future, and what its main spheres of action should be. According to the ACTE Statutes (Article 3), the association’s aim is to “represent and defend the interests of territorial collectives and adherent organisations that represent territories with a presence in the textile and clothing sector, including the leather and footwear sectors […]”. In recent years, many ACTE members have ceased to be “textile territories”. Even so, it is clear that one element members had and still have in common is their textile history. Many ACTE member territories share the wish to transform this past in collective memory: textile museums and archives, conservation and/or reconversion of the textile industrial heritage etc. Thus, it is suggested that our association should continue focusing mainly on the textile orientation. In fact, it is necessary that ACTE has a perspective focused on territories with a textile present. Clearly, however, other areas of cooperation amongst all


member will also continue to exist that are not exclusively related to the textile question (culture, development cooperation, training, etc.) but which help to valorise (even with different disciplinary approaches) the important role of the know-how of the textile production for the general culture of the territory. At European level, ACTE is recognised by European institutions as the representative of the textile territories. Our network can continue to play this role if it maintains its focus on the textile industry. The existence of a common denominator – textile history – ensures a greater degree of agreement and shared interests amongst members. Moreover, ACTE can also continue to establish and extend contacts with other organisations (employer’s associations, unions, chambers of commerce, research centres, etc.) which principally represent the textile and clothing industry. The work of the High-Level Group on the textile and clothing industry, one of the main centres of ACTE’s lobbying activities in recent times, is now coming to a close. We therefore need to find new spaces in which to continue representing our interests at European level. However, it seems appropriate to extend the the sphere of activity within the textile sector. The sector includes subsectors, stipulated in the ACTE statues, which have been rather neglected until now but which represent a great opportunity for further action of the association. The different sectors involved correspond to the model known as fashion system, or sistema moda, which includes everything that people wear: textiles, clothing, footwear, leather goods, jewellery, fur, glasses and watches, according to the statistical classification elaborated at European level by EUROSTAT. Within the sistema moda, technical textiles are of special interest. The entire background of reflection actions, analysis and activities accumulated by ACTE since its foundation could and should be transferred to these other sectors and subsectors, and also in particular to the representatives of territories which have recently joined the association.


Complementary activities

Activities focused on the sistema moda

Posi Possible working areas bles ámbitos de trabajo

Possible working areas

•Touristic promotion of the textile past •Urban development • Revaluation of industrial heritage • Relocation of workers • Promotion of alternative sectors • Globalisation adjustment fund • Etc.

• Company downsizing • Research and development • Innovation (technology and other) • High value added products (technical textiles, nanotechnology) • Etc.

Possible cross-cutting working areas

• • • • • • • •

Culture Regional policy European funds Training Development cooperation Immigration Corporate Social Responsibility Etc.


Future trends In its communication COM(2005) 474 “Implementing the Community Lisbon Programme: A policy framework to strengthen EU manufacturing - towards a more integrated approach for industrial policy”, the European Commission stresses that “the health of manufacturing industry is essential for Europe’s ability to grow.” In this communication, the Commission groups 27 manufacturing sectors into four broad categories: the food and life sciences industries; the machine and systems industries; the fashion and design industries; and the basic and intermediate industries. Community industrial policy will be based on this analysis in the future, centring much of the Community’s efforts and receiving a large proportion of the Structural Funds. The future of several of these sectors is marked particularly by the following challenges: • • • •

Guaranteeing structural adjustment; Improving access to markets; Investing in knowledge (research, innovation, and skills); Generating synergies between competitiveness, energy and environmental policies – see, for example, the case of REACH legislation.

The European Commission’s studies are based on very interesting analyses for ACTE territories carried out by Myro and Gandoy as regards the mature manufacturing industry, which is characterised, generally speaking, by weak demand and low technological intensity and which accounts for a large percentage of European industry overall. It still needs to be reflected on the role of ACTE, remembering that the sectors which are exposed to international competition, are included in the COM(2005) 661 final proposal for a Council Regulation on the indication of the country of origin of certain products imported from third countries. We therefore feel that it would be interesting if the sphere of activity of ACTE members during the next mandate would be the sectors and subsectors related to the sistema moda being industries formed, for the most part, by SMEs, production specialisation and territorial concentration being their most outstanding characteristics. Also, we should take into account all relevant economic activities, that is to say, both manufacturing production sectors and company services. Needless to say, all industrial sectors are faced by their own challenges and shortcomings. However, the fact that these sectors or subsectors share some characteristics would ensure that the territories where such industries are located would have certain interests in common. This would maintain the pecularity of the association ACTE which needs to continue representing territories with a tradition of an importante presence of the textile sector. Such horizontal characteristics, potential synergies, are the starting point for cooperation amongst network members. These are areas of activity in which networking, sharing experiences and good practices all helps to generate high value added for territories. This dynamic would allow us to extend the association’s membership base considerably, as not only textile territories in the strict sense would be eligible to join ACTE. At the same time, the risk of present members that have ceased to be textile territories leaving the association would be reduced if we consider in a positive sense


how much textile (codified or not) remains in the knowledge heritage of the territory. Enlarging the network would not only increase ACTE’s financial income, but would also enhance our possibilities of influencing the European institutions. More value added would be generated by the possibility of establishing new partnerships and alliances with European associations (employers, unions, etc.) representing the different sectors. Likewise, we propose to explore during the next mandate the possibility of extending the future activities of ACTE towards traditional and mature industries, sectors in “crisis” or affected by proven structural adjustment which in many cases bear similarities to the sectors of the sistema moda. In brief, we believe that we could extend our areas of action and cooperation. Namely, by going beyond the economic development as permitted by the Statutes at present, and by considering the possibility of representing the other industries of the sistema moda (clothing, leather goods, footwear, jewellery and glasses) (like the textile industry. Within the sistema moda special attention should be paid to technical textiles which represent promising prospects for tradional textile companies and an opportunity for diversification of their current products towards technically more advanced and value added products. The extension of the sphere of activity should promote mainly and necessarily innovation, research, knowledge based economy, technology and sustainability. Thus, in the field of technical textiles, in which European entreprises have competitive advantages compared to third countries, the introduction of the mentioned concepts is a key element for their development. In this sense, the technology centres, some of which are already adherent members of ACTE, should play a fundamental role given their capacity of contributing their knowledge in the mentioned areas. Growing spheres of action and activities:

Textileclothing Economic promotion

Culture

Environment

Strategic planning

Others

4.2. Achieving greater participation and communication from and amongst members - In order to increase ACTE’s representativeness it is essential to make a mayor effort in incorporating new members: o o o

In the countries which already have ACTE members, especially in those with a limited number of members In other European countries and countries of the Mediterranean basin New adherent members such as competitiveness poles, clusters, technology centres, etc.


- Both internal and external communication of results and proposals resulting from periodic Executive Committee meetings is crucial. We propose that, following each meeting, the vice-presidencies should draw up a report or call a meeting to inform national members. Continuous contact with the appropriate media in each country is important in order to enhance the external visibility of our association’s activities and concerns. The vice-presidencies should also be obliged to translate all documents discussed and approved by ACTE executive bodies for publication in both the Newsletter and Infoflash. -

The significant number of registered visits to the ACTE website (see graphics under point 3.2) shows that it is an essential communication tool for our association. However, it is necessary to further develop this instrument in order to make it a real source of information at the disposal of current and possible future members of ACTE. In this sense, besides the information currently available, the website should also include the following information:

-

Internal information • • •

-

External information • • • •

-

In-depth information about the current members: short description, contact person and links to the official websites of the member bodies (the latter are already set up) A section dedicated to possible future members: information about the rights and obligations of a member of ACTE, types of membership (effective member  adherent member), membership fees etc. A calendar of events organised by ACTE or by its member territories

Calendar of public events at European level which might be in members’ interest Information about open EU calls for proposals Links to useful websites New documents published by the EU institutions in strategic/priority areas of ACTE

As regards the 14 adherent members of ACTE, greater use should be made of the knowledge and know-how of these institutions (research and development, innovation etc.), when drafting and submitting transnational projects.

4.3. Optimising and strengthening the organisational structure -

We note that the growing centralisation of tasks and responsibilities has led to a considerable increase in the Executive Secretariat’s workload. In order to improve efficiency, there needs to be a better distribution of tasks between the Secretariat and national vice-presidencies. Areas such as the drafting and submission of European projects, the enlargement of ACTE towards the new EU Member States (territorial opening), the communication etc., could be divided between the Secretariat and those vice-presidencies that have both the human resources (technical staff) and the necessary know-how and experience. This would also entail increasing the responsibilities of ACTE vice-presidencies by assigning thematic responsibilities according to their fields of interest, coordinating, for instance, working groups.


-

In all spheres of activity, preliminary technical work is essential to our success, and should be strengthened in future. A good example is the European Commission’s recent approval of the Inclua and Twintex Museum projects, made possible thanks to the intense work of a technical team from the Executive Secretariat and some of the vice-presidencies.

-

Annual General Assemblies should be turned into real spaces for discussion and exchanges of experiences and good practices. The limited duration of these meetings (three hours on average) has made it impossible to open lively, interactive debate amongst participating members until now. We propose that General Assemblies should now last a full day, turning them into true “conferences”. We should also encourage the active participation of ACTE members by using different vehicles for exchanging opinions: working groups, round tables, debates, workshops, exhibition spaces, etc. Moreover, the organising member should undertake to publicise, disseminate and follow up the work of the General Assembly.

-

The ACTE Executive Committees should increase the time dedicated to debate, exchange of ideas and discussion of concrete proposals in order to impel a real strategic reflection amongst members of the Committee.

4.4. Strengthening our lobbying action Proposals: -

A successful lobbying campaign is the result of a long-term process agreed amongst all members. It is important to identify and define specific priorities. We therefore propose that the lobbying objectives for the following year should be agreed at ACTE General Assemblies. This could lead to the designation of “Thematic Years” by our network, following the example of the European Union’s thematic years6. Declaring “thematic years” would enable us to focus action and exchanges of experience on one specific area for a full year. Events of all kinds (talks, debates, exhibitions, press conferences, etc.) could be organised around a thematic year, both at local and regional level by members and at European level by the Secretariat. Thematic years would be closed at local level as part of the ACTE General Assembly and at European level by the organisation in Brussels of an annual conference. Possible topics for a Thematic Year (some examples): • Touristic promotion of the European textile past (“Textile tourism”) • Worker’s mobility/relocation • Innovative measures for the textile industry • The role of high value added products in the European textile industry • The promotion of fair trade It might also be appropriate to define the topic in accordance with the annual priorities of the EU institutions of even to adjust the thematic year of ACTE to the European thematic year.

-

6

Amongst our activities, establishing and maintaining stable dialogue with the European institutions is, without doubt, one of the greatest challenges. The current recognition of ACTE at European level is due, above all, to our contacts with the For instance, 2006 was declared “European Year of Workers’ Mobility”.


European Commission, particularly with the Directorates-General for Enterprise and Industry and Trade in the course of the work of the High-Level Group. Nonetheless, it is important to optimise ACTE’s profile and visibility before the other two main targets of our European lobbying: the European Parliament and the Committee of the Regions. As to the European Parliament, our lobbying activities should focus on the textile-clothing working group set up by MEPs Tokia Saïfi (France) and Joan Calabuig (Spain). There are also several parliamentary committees which deal with strategic topics for ACTE and its members: Committee on Industry, Research and Energy (ITRE), the Committee on International Trade (INTA), the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs (EMPL) and the Committee on Regional Development (REGI). The direct and personal contact with MEPs is important in order to accede to (privilegied) information or to submit amendments. Many ACTE members maintain important contacts with representatives of the European Parliament, especially with the representatives of their respective territories. However, until now there has been little transparency as to these contacts and therefore they couldn’t be used in the interest of ACTE. An important first step would be to draw up a list of the contacts ACTE members have at European level. Once the interlocutors have been identified, contact must be made. The main objective is to familiarise European representatives with our network and to make them aware of the problems and needs of ACTE member territories. -

The Committee of the Regions, advisary body of the European Union and representative of the European cities and regions is made up by 6 Committee being the most relevant for ACTE the Committee on Economic and Social Policy (ECOS), the Committee on Culture, Education and Research (EDUC) and the Committee on Territorial Cohesion Policy (COTER)7. It would also be convenient to participate in the next editions of the so-called structured dialogues. The dialogues, launched in 2004 and hosted by the Committee of the Regions are a new form of contact between the European Commission and the associations of local and regional authorities. The aim is to improve legislation by ensuring the integration of local and regional associations’ viewpoints before the formal decision-making processes start.

-

As a forum for debate and exchanges of opinion, we could think of setting up an Honour Committee, formed by representatives of the European institutions, namely the Members of the European Parliament, etc.

-

It would be convenient to organise every year one or several study and/or debate days with the operational and political bodies of the European Parliament and the European Commission to take place in Brussels or Strasbourg as appropriate. The organisation of public events at European level is an efficient tool to raise the European institutions’ awareness on concrete topics which affect the member territories of ACTE. Furthermore, it should also be a key instrument in our strategy of enhancing the network’s external visibility.

-

Over the last two years, the High-Level Group has been the main focus of our lobbying actions. We consider it essential to diversify our lobbying and to address other Community instruments of participation: submission of amendments to the European Parliament and the Committee of the Regions, participation at public

7

The Vice-president of ACTE Poland, Mr. Jerzy Kropiwnicki, is member of the COTER and DEVE Committees.


hearings, drafting of position documents, participation in the Committee of the Regions’ Structured Dialogues, etc.


Annex III

New organisation chart of ACTE


Anexo IV

Mandate Plan 2007-2009

MANDATE PLAN 2007-2009

0. Introduction 1. Increase in representativity and promotion of the international relations of ACTE 2. Communication activities 3. Strengthening the lobbying action 4. Promotion of strategic projects: European programmes and ACTE working groups 5. ACTE Governance


0. Introduction

Over the 15 years since it was first established, ACTE, founded in 1991 as one of the first thematic networks at European level, has become a powerful, recognised European association with more than 70 members. It is clear that both the internal functioning and the economic, industrial and social situation of member territories have changed in recent years. For this reason, it was considered necessary to open a broad-ranging process of reflection to detect and define new internal and external needs as precisely as possible in order to optimise ACTE’s work in the future. This process concluded with the adoption by the Extraordinary General Assembly of Guimarães, held on 4 December 2006, of the reflection document “ACTE 2007-2013: a strategic proposal”. The document includes several proposals to give consideration to the new situation of members, increase participation and exchanges amongst them, optimise and strengthen the organisational structure of the network and enhance our lobbying action. The present proposal for a mandate plan 2007-2009 of ACTE Europe, elaborated jointly by the Presidency and Executive Secretariat, emanates from the reflection document and aims at giving consideration with priorities and concrete activities to this strategic approach.

Teo Romero President

Fabio Giovagnoli Executive Secretary


Strategic lines

Specific objectives

Results to obtain

Activities

Instruments

Action plan / calendar 2007

1. Increase in representativity and promotion of the international relations of ACTE a. Enlargement within the EU 27 and in candidate countries (geographic enlargement)

Enlargement towards other EU Member States, in particular the countries of the enlargements 2004 and 2007.

Enlargement towards EU candidate countries.

To have members in at least 10 EU Member States.

To have ACTE members in Turkey.

Identification of the territories with a strong presence of the sistema moda in the EU member States. Elaboration of a list of cities with which current ACTE members maintain contacts. To establish and/or consolidate bilateral contacts. Missions to the main textile territories in those countries.

Programme “Europe for Citizens 20072013”: Action 1: Active citizens for Europe ACTE website – enhance the information on ACTE membership. Updated leaflets.

ACTE

th

12 June 2007, Istanbul: Participation of ACTE in the EC conference in the framework of the EuroMediterranean Dialogue on textiles and clothing.

Priority countries 2007: - Turkey - Greece - Baltic States

in

ACTE Newsletter – include potential future members in the mailing list.

Celebration of ACTE Executive Committees in candidate territories. Integration of potential future members in EU projects (for example: Twintex Project). b.

Increase

in

Increase

in

the

Each Vice-presidency

Integration of potential

Increase in members


membership in the current ACTE countries

number of members in those countries which only have a limited number of members. To increase the membership towards sectors of the sistema moda.

c. Adherent members

Increase in the number of adherent members.

of ACTE represents at least 5 national members. Reduction in the current imbalance amongst the Vicepresidencies. At the end of the mandate, ACTE has 100 effective members (currently: 73).

To have adherent members in each ACTE Member State. Adherent members play an active role in the network’s activities. The association benefits from the adherent members’ know-how in areas such as innovation, research, knowledge based economy etc.

in: - United Kingdom - Portugal

future members in ACTE projects (Ex. Participation of the Lyon City hall in the Twintex project).

Twintex Conference, 30 and 31 March 2007 in Prato: Participation of the City halls of Lyon (France), Santo Tirso and Vila Nova de Familaçao (Portugal)

To profit from the celebration of Executive Committees for meetings with potential future members.

To consult adherent members for the drafting of European projects. To organise periodical meetings between adherent members. To create a system of technology transfer between the ACTE member territories.

Working group on research, development and innovation, technical textiles etc. => integrated by adherent and effective members of ACTE.

First meeting between different adherent members of ACTE in Prato, 30 and 32 March.


d. To enhance cooperation with non-European countries

To establish contacts with countries of the Mediterranean basin, South-East Asia and Latin America.

Collaboration and cooperation agreements with Morocco and Tunisia.

Strategic lines

Specific objectives

Results to obtain

Activities

Members receive the Infoflash twice per month (on average) in 4 languages.

Monitoring of European news and of members’ initiatives.

European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument 20072013 (ENPI): Cross-border cooperation (CBC) – Mediterranean programme Instruments

2. Communication activities a. Infoflash

The Infoflash is sent periodically (at least twice per month). To increase the number of news provided by ACTE members. To strengthen ACTE as a platform for the exchange of information, experiences and best practices. To boost the network’s internal activities. To

guarantee

the

The Infoflash is considered as a working instrument, as interactive communication tool.

Drafting of the Infoflash and translation of the news into ES/IT/EN and FR. Distribution to members via mailing list.

Infoflash

Action plan / calendar 2007


best possible dissemination of the results of the ACTE Executive Committees and General Assembly. b. Newsletter

To promote ACTE and its activities and to increase the external visibility. To increase contribution members in drafting of Newsletter contributing news).

the of the the (by their

The section “Members’ news” of the Newsletter contains one piece of news per Vicepresidency. ACTE members consider the Newsletter as useful tool for the dissemination of their activities and projects. The mailing list includes the main European stakeholders and the relevant representatives at national/regional and local level (ACTE territories).

c. ACTE Web site

Design of a new ACTE Web site.

The new Web site is user-friendly.

To

ACTE

increase

members

th

Monitoring of European news and of members’ initiatives.

Release of the 8 edition of the Newsletter in January 2007.

Drafting of the Newsletter and translation into ES, EN, FR and IT.

=> trimestrial release

Constant updating of the mailing list. Distribution to ACTE members and nonmembers via mailing list. Publication of Newsletter on ACTE website.

the the

To hire a company for the design of the new ACTE Web site.

Dreamweaver programme (design and maintenance of the Web site).

Launch of the new ACTE Web site in 2007.


substantially the number of users of the Web site. To increase ACTE’s external visibility and guarantee the best possible dissemination of the proposals and activities of ACTE. To approach potential interested parties. d. Advertising material / publications

Updating of ACTE leaflets.

the

consider the Web site as working tool. The information provided on the new Web site is of added value for current and potential future ACTE members.

Constant updating of the contents of the Web site.

The members’ Web sites include a direct link to the ACTE Web site.

Updated version of the ACTE leaflets available in EN, ES, FR, IT, PL and PT. Each Vice-presidency disposes of 2000 copies for dissemination at national level.

To update contents/graphics.

the

2007

To determine the number of examples per language according to the available budget. To hire a publishing and translation company. Dissemination of hard copies to: EU stakeholders, ACTE members, potential future members.

Drafting of

a joint

A tangible product for

Drafting of the report.

Annual, adoption of the


e. Relevant media at European and national level

activities report of the Presidency and Executive Secretariat.

its posterior dissemination via Infoflash, Newsletter and Web site.

To increase the presence of ACTE in the relevant media (at European, national, regional and local level).

ACTE is considered as opinion leader.

To enhance the external visibility of the networks’ activities and claims of the network.

Section “Press” on the new ACTE Web site =>archive of the press releases.

report by the ACTE General Assembly.

- To establish a data base of the main European media and specialised press. - Draft of an official press release of ACTE Europe after each EC/GA and to inform about other activities of the network, projects, lobby actions etc. - The press release will be sent to the different Vice-presidencies for publication in the relevant media of their respective territories. - Monitoring of the news on ACTE in the relevant media.

Press conferences of the Twintex project: - 26 January, Brussels - 22 February, Lodz - 31 March, Prato


Strategic lines

Specific objectives

Results to obtain

Activities

ACTE activities and exchanges of experiences between its members are focused on one specific area for a full year => 2007: “Fashion and Health”

- Organisation of conferences, debates, exhibitions, press conferences at European and local level. - Organisation of an annual conference in Brussels.

Instruments

Action plan / calendar 2007

3. Strengthening the lobbying action

a. Definition concrete lobbying priorities

of

Designation of “Thematic Years of ACTE”. Possible topics of a Thematic Year: touristic promotion of the European textile past (“textile tourism”), worker’s relocation, innovative measures for the sistema moda, fair trade, industrial reconversion, corporate social responsibility etc.

b. Maintenance of a stable contact with the European institutions

“Thematic Year 2007”: “Fashion and Health” -Drafting of a petition proposal -Meeting of experts for the drafting of the text -Technical assistance of ETUF:TCL and Euratex for the followup of the petition EC in Prato, 31 March: debate on the wording of the petition Adoption of the petition by the plenary meetings of ACTE members’ institutions.

To enhance ACTE’s visibility before the European Parliament and Committee of the Regions (CoR).

ACTE maintains stable contacts with the Commission, the European Parliament and the CoR.

The EU institutions need to be constantly

The main stakeholders

EU know

- Drawing up of a list of the contacts ACTE members have with the EU institutions. - Identification of the relevant interlocutors at the European

Regular meetings on the occasion of conferences, seminars etc.

th

12 June, Istanbul: Participation of ACTE in the EC conference in the framework of the Euro-Mediterranean Dialogue on textiles and clothing. December 2007:


informed about our activities and demands.

ACTE. ACTE is consulted by the institutions and requested as speaker in European conferences.

-

-

ACTE participates in the Structured Dialogues of the CoR.

-

ACTE participates in the “Open Days 2008 – European Week of Cities and Regions”.

-

c. Maintenance of a stable dialogue with the socioeconomic players

To deepen the contacts with Euratex and ETUF: TCL.

ACTE collaborates closely with Euratex and ETUF: TCL.

Strategic lines

Specific objectives

Results to obtain

-

Commission, European Parliament and CoR. Mailing with information on ACTE. Meetings with MEPs, Commissioners etc. Monitoring of the parliamentary agenda and the publication of public consultations. Drafting of position papers. Setting up of a consortium of ACTE members for the participation in the “Open Days 2008”.

Activities

Presentation of the petition “Fashion and Health” to the European Commission, EU Parliament and CoR.

Regular meetings with representatives of Euratex and ETUF: TCL. Instruments

30 and 31 March 2007, Conference Twintex: participation of Euratex and ETUF: TCL.

Infoflash, Newsletter and the new Web site.

Deadlines for the programme “Europe for Citizens 20072013”:

Action plan / calendar 2007

4. Promotion of strategic projects: European programmes and ACTE working groups

a. Open calls for proposals and project proposals

To inform members about open European calls for proposals.

ACTE members use the network’s communication tools for the search for

Constant monitoring of the publication of calls for proposals and European programmes.


b. Enlargement of the working group on textile museums

To facilitate the dissemination of project proposals of one of the members who will be the leadpartner and who searches project partners amongst other ACTE members.

project partners.

To widen the collaboration between museums in the cultural field.

Submission of project proposal 2007.

Action 1.1: 01.06.2007 / 01/09/2007 Action 1.2.: 01/12/2007

a in

Organisation of travelling exhibitions on textile products.

Culture Programme

2007

Submission of a Culture 2007 project: 28 February 2007

VII Framework Programme RDT 2007-2013 – research activities.

Twintex conference: first meeting of some of the adherent members (Leitat, Tecnotessile, PIN, CCI Lille).

Compilation of an European catalogue on textile products.

c. Constitution of a working group on R&D and innovation

To promote collaboration between adherent members and to strengthen their role in ACTE via the drafting of project proposals in the field of R&D.

Elaboration of a project proposal on technical textiles in 2007.

-

-

-

-

Drafting of a project proposal in the field

-

Compilation of the projects submitted by members Elaboration of an activities report of members Organisation of meetings between members. Definition of the activities and timetable of the working group’s meetings Compilation of the projects submitted

Twintex conference: first meeting of some of


of health and security of textile products (chemical and sanitary traceability).

To promote a project proposal on the impact of the REACH regulation.

d. Constitution of a working group on strategic planning and urbanism

To promote the exchange of best practices and prepare common project proposals aimed at resolving urban problems.

Constitution of a working group on urban issues. To dispose of a calendar of open calls for proposals in this field. Submission of a project proposal by the members of the working group.

by members Elaboration o fan activities report of members - Organisation of meetings between members - Definition of the activities and timetable of the working group’s meetings. - Preparation of an impact assessment on REACH (Provincia de Novara) -

- Activities aimed at the valorisation and promotion of the cultural and urban heritage (development of tourism); - Renovation and revaluation of urban areas; - Activities in the field of urban welfare; - Publication on urbanism and the textile sector (examples of best practices of ACTE

the adherent members (Leitat, Tecnotessile, PIN, CCI Lille).

Twintex conference: first meeting of some of the adherent members (Leitat, Tecnotessile, PIN, CCI Lille).


members). e. Constitution of a working group on sectors related to the sistema moda

Identification and actions to modernise and diversify the territories dependent on the sistema moda. Identify the industry and manufacture sectors affected by structural adjustments.

Strategic lines

Start of common promotion activities with those sectors. Specific objectives

Results to obtain

Activities

Close relation of joint leadership between the Presidency and the Executive Secretariat.

To organise periodical meetings between Presidency and Executive Secretariat.

Instruments

5. ACTE Governance

a. To increase the professionalism of ACTE

To strengthen the organisational structure of ACTE. The institutions which assume an important office within ACTE should contribute human and/or financial resources.

Better distribution of

Abolition of the post of the ACTE trainee. Full-time dedication to ACTE of two persons. The Vice-

ACTE

working

Action plan / calendar 2007


the different tasks between Presidency/ Secretariat and the national Vicepresidencies.

presidencies assume thematic responsibilities: Vice-presidency ACTE Poland / President of the General Assembly: - 1.a. => Facilitate contacts with the Member States of the 2004 and 2007 enlargements - 3.b. => enhance the visibility of ACTE before the CoR Vice-presidency for European Affaires: - 3. b. =>political representation in Brussels, establish and deepen contacts with MEPs, organise meetings with Commissioners etc. Delegate for International Relations: - 1.d. => establish contacts with nonEuropean countries

groups


b. To increase the added value of ACTE meetings

To adjust the annual ACTE budget to the mandate plan.

The budgetary lines of the ACTE budget are linked to clear objectives/mandates.

To increase the number of participants in the General Assemblies.

ACTE General Assemblies are turned into “conventions”.

To extend the duration of the General Assemblies.

The majority of ACTE members participates in the General Assembly.

To extent the working session of the Executive Committee.

The Executive Committee dedicates most of its time to the debate and discussion of concrete proposals.

To deepen the debate about the strategic lines of the association during the Executive Committees.

The deliberations and activities of the Executive Committee are fully transparent to “ordinary” members of ACTE.

- To foresee the organisation of round tables, debates, workshops etc. on the occasion of a GA. - To guarantee the publicity, dissemination and follow-up of the Assembly. - Invitation of speakers from the European institutions. - Dissemination of the results of the Executive Committees via Infoflash and Newsletter. - The Vice-presidencies draw up a report or call a meeting to inform national members. - Translation of the documents approved by the bodies of ACTE.


Anexo V

Joint press release ACTE – ETUF:TCL, 19 September

PRESS RELEASE ACTE and the ETUF:TCL call for the defence of the health of European citizens On 19 September, the President of the European Textile Collectivities Association (ACTE), Teo Romero, and the President of the European Trade Union Federation: Textiles, Clothing, Leather (ETUF:TCL), Valeria Fedeli, presented to the press the “Petition for a certified quality. Transparency, traceability, composition and origin of TCL products”. With the Petition, ACTE and the ETUF:TCL express their concern as regards the health risks for European workers and consumers arising for the presence of dangerous substances in TCL products. Scientific studies have shown that the textiles, clothing and other products of the TCL sectors are amongst the most frequent causes of irritating dermatitis (DIC) and allergies (DAC) for contact, and can contain annoying, toxic and carcinogenic substances prohibited by European norms and of individual Member States. Consumer policy constitutes a key element of the strategic objective of the European Commission that consists in improving the quality of life of all citizens of the EU. However, the increase in international trade flows and the progressive elimination of tariff barriers expose the sector to new risks due to the entry in trade of textile, clothing, leather and footwear products whose production process is outside the control, since they often use products and processes which are no longer permitted in Europe. In view of a confirmed rise in dermatological pathologies especially in the youngest age categories, ACTE and the ETUF:TCL ask the European Commission and Member States to take a series of actions considered as necessary to reduce irritating and harmful substances in clothing: • •

A clear definition of “risks arising for textile, clothing, leather, footwear and accessories products”, both in the production processes and in their final use; An increased coordination between the European Commission and Member States as regards the creation, update and networking of specific national databases aimed at the collection and monitoring of all chemical substances used in the production processes of TCL sectors; To guarantee the transparency and raise European consumer’ awareness through the definition and the experimentation of a process aiming at a guaranteed traceability of TCL products destined for consumption on the basis of health and safety requirements.

The Petition has been formally approved by the Executive Committees of ACTE and the ETUF:TCL on 18 September and will be adopted by the plenary sessions of ACTE member cities and regions by the beginning of December. ACTE was created in 1991 in Guimarães (Portugal) and currently comprises more than 70 members from 6 EU Member States and Croatia. ACTE represents European territories with a strong presence of the textile and fashion sector. The ETUF:TCL was created in 1975 and brings together 70 free and democratic trade union federations stemming from 40 European countries (mainly the European Union, the European Economic Area, accession countries as well as EU candidate countries, but also from the Balkans and a number of other Eastern European countries).


Annex VI

Petition “Fashion and Health� of ACTE

Petition for a certified quality Transparency, traceability, composition and origin of products of the TCL sectors

Improving health and safety conditions of the population should be set as an objective by the international community. During the last years, Europe has seen increasing requests concerning the improvement of health and safety conditions in the textiles, clothing, leather, footwear and accessories sectors (sectors being part of the so-called sistema moda), with particular regard to risks arising from the use of chemicals both at work and to the benefit of final users - citizens and consumers of the European Member States. As far as health and safety are concerned, a greater attention to and a clearer collective knowledge about the use of chemicals in production cycles - coupled with controls certified by public authorities - would surely reduce risks of professional diseases of workers, and better guarantee consumers’ health. Consumer policy constitutes however a key element of the strategic objective of the Commission that consists in improving the quality of life of all citizens of the EU. The performance of such policies implies legislation and other actions in order to promote the interests, health and security of consumers in the Internal Market, in order to ensure adequate consideration of consumer issues inherent in all policies of the EU and in order to complete the consumer policies conducted by Member States. The increase in international trade flows and the progressive elimination of tariff barriers however expose the sector to new risks due to the entry in trade of textile, clothing, leather and footwear products whose production process is outside the control, since they often use products and processes which are no longer permitted in Europe. Such new scenarios can cause a greater exposure of consumers to health risks. The skin is the part of the body most exposed to the aggression of dangerous substances, that leads to an increase of allergic and irritating dermatitis from contact in a population, like that of Europe, where there is a confirmed rise in dermatological pathologies especially in the youngest age categories. Textiles, clothing and other products of the TCL sectors are among the most frequent causes of irritating dermatitis (DIC) and allergies (DAC) from contact, and can contain annoying, toxic and carcinogenic substances prohibited by European norms and of individual Member States. On this subject, various European countries have endorsed directive 2002/61/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council, of 19 July 2002, that prohibits the presence in the end product of azocolourants in a position to releasing twenty two aromatic amines considered carcinogenic. Clothing Dermatitis generally is attributed to chemical products and dyes, added in an incorrect way to fibres during their manufacture and clothing assembly. In particular,


the responsible agents are finishes, colouring, metals, rubber and glues. Also bleaching, biocides, flame retardants and other agents occasionally are recognized as triggering substances. Numerous researches at international level have permitted the creation of models for the assessment of risks associated with the exposure of the skin to toxic and carcinogenic substances. On the basis of such studies, numerous precautionary laws have been enacted and are continuously evolving. The issue of risks tied to the exposure of the skin to irritating, harmful and sensitising substances present in clothing must be tackled. Based on this premise, and in consideration of the norms in force at EU level in matters of consumer protection and security, we hold that operators of the TCL sectors should be in a position to identify those who have supplied them with a textile product or whatever accessory destined for consumption. To such ends, the operators should have systems and procedures that permit to put relevant information at the disposal of competent authorities that request it.

For these reasons, we ask: The European Commission

1. To provide, in collaboration with the concerned Ministers of Member States, social and economic partners, a clear definition of “risks arising from textile, clothing, leather, footwear and accessories products”, both in the production processes and in their final use, which could be put into practice - in accordance with EU Reg. 1907/2006 (REACH) - through the institution of national observatories evaluating risks for human health based on the experience already gained in certain EU Member States 8; 2. To extend to all Member States the creation, update and networking of specific national databases aimed at the collection and monitoring of all chemicals substances used in the production processes of the TCL sectors; 3. To strive for a greater coordination with the individual Member States, aimed at convincing and communicating with the competent health authorities9 for controls and monitoring of the health and security of textile products and their accessories, with particular regard to customs controls of goods entering the EU market; 4. To promote the definition and the experimentation of a process aiming at a guaranteed traceability of TCL products destined for consumption on the basis of health and safety requirements – in accord with the main economic players – with the aim to dispose of a compulsory adoption in the Internal Market; 5. To foster and promote the development and the use of technologies suitable for the traceability of TCL products destined for consumption, with particular attention to R&D technologies. 1 See proposal for the institution of a Osservatorio nazionale delle dermatiti da contatto da prodotti di utilizzo nell’industria tessile, Health Ministry, Italy. 9 See for example Bill 2074 of the Chamber of Italian deputies Dispositions for the security of textile products and assimilated products of 15.12.2006, sec. 3 and 4 (translated title)


6. To strive to raise European consumers’ awareness of health risks associated with the use of dangerous substances in TCL products promoting specific publicity and information campaigns.

To the Member States:

1. To commit themselves to approve a European Directive concerning the introduction of a mandatory origin label at least for TCL products imported in the Internal Market; 2. To set up a clear definition and monitoring of products defined as not safe for the health of the consumer, involving the main economic players of the sector, and to set competent health authorities for the control and the monitoring, including the definition of related sanctions for defaulting producers, importers and distributors; 3. To give full implementation of the rapid alert system RAPEX10, on the basis of which departments and offices identified by the competent authorities at the level of individual Member States can proceed with inspections and with the taking of samples of textiles in the places where they are produced, conserved in warehouse, sold or where textile products and accessories are consumed, including ports of call and means of transport; 4. That the said departments and offices can also proceed to the seizure of goods and, where necessary for the protection of the public health, to their destruction. In any case, such departments and offices adopt the measures taking into account the principle of precaution and act in the respect of the Treaty establishing the European Community, in particular articles 28 and 30, in order to put into effect the measures that are proportionate to the gravity of the risk; 5. To proceed to the identification and publicity of the network of accredited laboratories and of second level laboratories in a position to analyse textile samples on behalf of private parties who for their business use a handbook of correct procedures for self-monitoring made available by the competent health authorities, in concert with the main representative associations at the national level of textile sector and of consumers; 6. To provide for the institution of national observatories for the adverse reactions from textile products and contact dermatitis, and to favour the exchange of information, studies and research at EU level.

10

Of which annex II of directive 2001/95/EC of the European Parliament and the Council, 3 December 2001


Annex VII

Accessions to the Petition in Poland

1. Mayor of the City of Bielsko- Biała - Jacek Krywult 2. Wieluń District Consumer’s Ombudsman - Anna Zychla 3. Mayor of the City of Zduńska Wola – Zenon Rzeźniczak 4. Mayor of the City of Nowa Ruda - Tomasz Kiliński 5. Federation of Consumers - National Council - President Małgorzata Niepokulczycka 6. Wieruszów – District Consumer’s Ombudsman – Aleksy Gierus 7. Municipal Consumer’s Ombudsman of the City of Lodz - Zbigniew Kwaśniewski 8. Zgierz District Consumer’s Ombudsman – Ewa Walczak 9. Polish Committee for Standarisation - Prezes Tomasz Schweitzer 10. Mayor of the City of Częstochowa - Tadeusz Wrona 11. Radomsko District Consumer’s Ombudsman - Anna Gaik-Ślęzak 12. Mayor of the Commune of Aleksandrów Łódzki - Jacek Lipiński 13. Mayor of the City of Pabianice – Zbigniew Dychto 14. Bełchatów District Consumer’s Ombudsman - Piotr PorzeŜyński 15. Mayor of the City of Nowy Targ – Marek Fryźlewicz and Council of the City of Nowy Targ 16. Mayor of the City of Konstantynów Łódzki – Henryk Brzyszcz 17. Mayor of the City of Ozorków – Andrzej Giziński 18. Tomaszów Mazowiecki District Consumer’s Ombudsman – Agnieszka Drzewoska-Łuczak 19. Prefect of the District of Tomaszow Mazowiecki - Piotr Kagankiewicz 20. Mayor of the City of Zgierz - Jerzy Sokół 21. Brzeziny District Consumer’s Ombudsman - Zbigniew Bączyński 22. Kutno District Consumer’s Ombudsman - Aleksandra Bielecka 23. Mayor of the Commune of Andrychów – Jan Pietras 24. Piotrków Trybunalski - District Consumer’s Ombudsman - Dariusz Rogalski 25. Municipal Consumer’s Ombudsman of Zduńska Wola City- Izabela Gabrysiak 26. Łowicz - District Consumer’s Ombudsman - Agnieszka Kopczyńska 27. Mayor of the City of Bielawa - Ryszard Dźwiniel with the Council of Bielawa City 28. Mayor of the City of Rzgów - Jan Mielczarek 29. Mayor of the City of Tuszyn - Tadeusz Walas 30. Mayor of the City of Płock - Mirosław Milewski 31. Municipal Consumer’s Ombudsman of the City of Piotrków Trybunalski - Bartłomiej Karasiński 32. EEDRI – Entrepreneurship and Economic Development Research Institute 33. Deputy Mayor of the City of Kudowa Zdrój – Piotr Maziarz


Annex VIII

Speech of Jerzy Kropiwnicki in Istanbul

JERZY KROPIWNICKI President General Assembly of the European Textile Collectivities Association (ACTE) “Local and regional strategies to manage structural changes” Istanbul, 12 June 2007

Introduction

Good afternoon Ladies and Gentlemen, Let me begin this address by thanking the European Commission and ITKIB (Istanbul Textile and Apparel Exporters’ Association) for inviting the European Textile Collectivities Association (hereafter ACTE) to this conference. It is in fact an encouraging sign that the Commission is taking into consideration the important role of local and regional authorities in mitigating and managing the social and economic impacts caused by the restructuring of the textile and clothing sector. ACTE was founded in Portugal, in 1991, by six municipalities and is currently one of the first associations of local authorities at European level. Today, ACTE gathers more than 70 members from 7 European countries and its founding aims are: “To represent and defend the interests of territorial collectivities and adherent organisations that represent territories with a presence of the textile and fashion sector”. Not only has the textile and clothing industry undergone profound changes over the last years, but these transformations have also changed the economic and social realities of those territories which were highly depended on the sector. The City of Łódź, whose Mayor I am, is a good example of huge influence of textile industry on the city’s economy. Łódź – nowadays the second biggest city in Poland, for more than fifteen hundred years was strongly connected with textile industry. Textile employees amounted to approximately 60% of all employees in the city. In the 90-ties a very serious problem connected with local economy and labor market appeared (unemployment rate increased up to 20%). It was a result of drastic limitation of existing textile sale markets. Most of ACTE’s member territories have ceased to be “textile territories” in the strict sense – as they used to be at the foundation of the association – and all had to and will continue to manage the restructuring of the sector.


ACTE is an important platform for its members to tighten institutional collaboration ties and to promote the exchange of experiences and best practices in areas such as economic promotion, employment, training, urbanism and culture. The promotion of innovative policies to anticipate and manage change at local and regional level is currently high on our agenda. As it name suggests, the European Textile Collectivities Association and its members try to tackle the challenges of the sector from an institutional and territorial approach: both textile companies and employees are in our territories and as local and regional policy makers we have to ensure the right framework conditions and provide support instruments. ACTE believes in the future of the textile and clothing industry in our territories. It is important to place greater emphasis on the growth opportunities that exist: technical or industrial textiles, brands, new business opportunities with emerging economies, etc. The repetition of negative messages about this industry harms the image of the sector as a whole and of the respective territories.

Available tools for territories to manage structural changes Having said this, let us also be aware of the fact that there will be winners and losers in this transition, process of change. Even successful change management is unlikely to take place against a background of zero job losses and company closures, which are naturally the most painful for territories. However, appropriate support mechanisms can help territories to mitigate the social and economic impacts of restructuring. Let me mention 3 lines of action, ACTE has helped to promote and develop in our territories over the last years:

1. Actions aimed at encouraging strategic planning 2. Actions aimed at encouraging strategic change in companies 3. Actions aimed at promoting worker relocation and diversification -----------------------------------Firstly, the development and execution of strategic planning processes has been an important tool to successfully manage change in many ACTE territories recently: “Industrial districts” in Italy, Local Strategic Textile Plans in Spain, Local Development Strategy in the City of Łódź or Competitiveness Poles in France for instance. Independent of the different denominations and territorial specificities, these models have one thing in common: a methodology based on a close collaboration and networking between the main players: companies, workers, research centres, universities, public authorities, and developed within a defined geographical area.


Amongst others, strategic planning aims at improving allocation of public resources for the support of the textile and clothing sector, strengthening competitiveness and innovation of companies and promoting diversification of the local production and employment alternatives. In light of the positive results achieved in several textile and clothing territories, the High Level Group on textiles and clothing in its Follow-up report of 18 September 2006 considered that “greater publicity should be given to the outcome of such strategic plans, and that wherever possible, they should be used as a basis to convince other textile/clothing regions of the intrinsic value of the establishment of such plans”. Let me assure you that ACTE will continue its efforts to widely publicise the achievements of strategic planning as they are a key factor for enhancing the sectors’ and thus the territories’ image. -----------------------------------Secondly, in order to use the existing business opportunities to the maximum, our companies need to change or adapt their business model to remain competitive. Actions may range from business downsizing to a shift towards new products and applications, business cooperation, innovation and increased internationalisation. Of course, the main responsibility for a strategic business change lies in the hands of the companies concerned. But local and regional authorities can provide support tools to (mainly small) companies which are particular vulnerable and cannot take the advantage of new business opportunities. Also, technology and research centres, universities, etc. located in our territories can offer their expertise and important instruments to companies to include innovation in their business activities or provide opportunities for the reorientation of activities. ACTE invites these institutions to participate as adherent members to strengthen scientific and technological excellence in our member territories. --------------------------------The inevitable transformation of companies entails a change in their dimension. The decrease in the number of employees of the textile and clothing sector in our territories has been considerable in the last years. Especially small, traditional companies with a highly specialized yet under qualified workforce were and are affected by this development. Job losses are of major concern for local and regional policy makers. The third line of action, the promotion of worker relocation and diversification, is thus of enormous importance for ACTE and its members. Proper training is essential: both for those employees who remain within the industry but need to shift their skills towards new products and new textile applications, and for employees who have to leave the sector and need to seek employment elsewhere. Thus, ACTE members are working both for the provision of appropriate tools for the re-skilling and for the relocation of workers and promotion of alternative sectors with capacity of employment within our


territories. Activities range from specific training and promotion of entrepreneurship education to support structures for labour intermediation, provision of industrial land for new industrial activities and to establish business parks, improvement of infrastructures to raise attractiveness for (foreign) investors, etc. Good example of implementation the above mentioned activities is the City of Łódź. Since 2002, we are building a positive climate for all entities mainly by creating investor-friendly conditions and incentives for both local and international companies. Thanks to the Local Development Strategy 25 thousand new job places will be created by 2010, and 40 thousand by 2015. The results of the strategy are already seen – the unemployment rate decreased from about 20% to 12% (from the end of 2002 till April 2007). Also new foreign investments have appeared – General Electric, AIG Lincoln, Bosch Siemens, Indesit and Dell company, for instance. Besides, ACTE considers the creation of the EU Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) as important financial instrument to support laid-off workers by funding services such as job search assistance, personalised retraining, or assisting self employment. Nevertheless, ACTE regrets that only Member States can submit an application for a contribution of the EGF and that local and regional authorities are exempted. The territories are strongly hit by the closure of enterprises, the reduction of personnel, and the lack of entrepreneurial dynamism and should therefore have direct access to the funds allocated by the EGF.

Conclusion Local and regional policy makers are very concerned about the negative impacts of the restructuring of the textile and clothing industry and we constantly have to provide appropriate tools to ensure a sustainable economic and social development of our territories.

Let me conclude my address by saying that ACTE looks forward to continuing to closely work together with the main players in Europe and to extending this cooperation to representatives from the Mediterranean basin. We all have a role to play in mitigating the socio-economic impact of restructuring on the employees, companies and territories.

I should also take the opportunity to publicly express our great interest in establishing collaboration ties with local and regional authorities from the Mediterranean basin, which is by the way one of the main strategic lines of the current ACTE mandate plan. In today’s conference, our association is represented by a small delegation headed by Executive Secretary, Fabio Giovagnoli, to further inform you about ACTE and its activities. We have also left some leaflets outside for your information.

Thank you for your attention.


Annex IX

ACTE participation in Structured Dialogues, 29 November STRUCTURED DIALOGUE EUROPEAN TEXTILE COLLECTIVITIES ASSOCIATION (ACTE) JERZY KROPIWNICKI

ACTE is an European Association of more than 70 local and regional administrations from Italy, Spain, Portugal, Poland, Belgium, France and Croatia. Founded in 1991, our association represents and defends the interests of territories with a presence of the textile and fashion sector. ACTE also participated as representative of the European textiles territories in the High Level Group on Textiles and Clothing (2004-2006) of the European Commission. The opening up of the international textile markets in 2005, has placed European regions and cities which have traditionally been substantial or indeed highly concentrated sources of employment for the textile and fashion industry in a precarious position. The virulence of the impact of globalization on this industry has forced local and regional authorities together with other stakeholders and industry representatives to launch processes of industrial restructuring, to promote alternative business sectors and to put in place specific support tools to relocate the many employees made redundant.

In that sense, ACTE considers the creation of the EU Globalisation Adjustment Fund (EGF) as important financial instrument to support laid-off workers by funding services such as job search assistance, personalised retraining, or assisting self employment. Thus, I wish to submit the following questions: 

ACTE regrets that only Member States can submit an application for a contribution of the Globalisation Adjustment Fund and that are local and regional public authorities are exempted. The territories are strongly hit by the closure of enterprises, the reduction of personnel, and the lack of entrepreneurial dynamism and should therefore have direct access to the funds allocated by the Globalisation Adjustment Fund. Does the European Commission envisage to also accepting local and regional public authorities as applicants?



In July 2008, the European Commission expects to adopt a Communication on the anticipation and management of change (2

nd

phase of consultation of social partners). Will

this Communication take into consideration measures for the diversification of territories such as the promotion of alternative business sectors with capacity of employment within our territories?


Annex X

Programm of the final conference of the Inclua project


Annex XI Strategic lines

Table of projects Instruments

Objectives

Priorities / project themes

Kind of activities

Action Plan Calendar 2007

Bringing together people from local communities across Europe to share and exchange experiences, opinions and values, to learn from history and to build for the future; Fostering action, debate and reflection related to European citizenship and democracy, shared values, common history and culture through cooperation within civil society organisations at European level;

Europe for citizens a. Open call programme for 2007-2013 Action 1 Active proposals citizenship for Europe

Future of the European Union and its basic values;

Active European Citizenship: participation and democracy Europe in Europe;

Bringing closer to its citizens by promoting Europe's values and achievements, while preserving the memory of its past;

Encouraging interaction between citizens and civil society organisations from all participating countries, contributing to intercultural dialogue and bringing to the fore both Europe's diversity and unity, with particular attention to activities aimed at developing closer ties between citizens from Member States of the European Union as constituted on 30 April 2004 and those from Member States which have acceded since that date.

Conferences and seminars; Inter-cultural meeting among dialogue (2008 citizens; European thematic Year); networks People’s well being in Europe: employment, social cohesion and sustainable development; Impact of policies societies

EU in

Measure 1.2: Thematic networks of twinned towns Deadline for submission: 01/12/2007 Eligible period for actions:

from 01 April 2008 to 31 March 2009


Strategic lines

Instruments

Objectives

Priorities / project themes

Kind of activities

Action Plan Calendar 2007

Project proposal: title to be defined Project Leader: Museo del Tessuto di Prato / ACTE

Programme Cultura 2007

to promote transnational Putting on web of Organisation of an mobility of people European textile working in the cultural exhibition of textile heritage of textile sector; artworks ; Measure 1.2.1: museums; cooperation Realization of an to encourage the measures Study of European transnational circulation online textile textile heritage; of artistic and cultural catalogue; Deadline for works and products; Realization of submission: Traninig and project work by 31 October 2007 to encourage information activities young artists; intercultural dialogue. Organisation exhibition /exposition project works

b. Working group textile museums

of of

Development of transnational networks and sharing methods and tools for the management of cultural poles Promotion Project proposal: transnational IMMAP (Innovating initiatives for Memory MAP) valorization

of

the of historical heritage Project Leader: and of cultural Comune di Prato / resources (material Interreg IV B - Objective 4.2: ACTE and immaterial), with Priority Axe 4 Promotion of identity the perspective of and Promotion of a Exploration of integrated territorial polycentric and enhancement of cultural resources for a better linkages between development integrated textile integration of MED design, development products and of the MED space space ACTE territories; Supporting the exchange of good Competition for practices setting up young artists; innovative cultural services; Prototyping new textile samples Promotion of cultural initiatives reinforcing economic attractivity of territories; Dissemination of experiences enhancing cultural resources and local and regional heritages.

Marseille, 21November: Kick off meeting Med programme


Strategic lines

b. Working group textile museums (follows)

Instruments

European Territorial Cooperation Interreg IVC – Priority Axis 2: Environment and prevention of risks

Objectives

Objective 6 Enhancing the attractiveness of the territory in support of socio-economic development and sustainable tourism by protecting the cultural heritage and landscape

Priorities / project themes

Creation of touristic routs promoting / enhancing European textile industrial and cultural heritage

Kind of activities

Action Plan Calendar 2007

Exchange of good practices among local authorities in the field of touristic development (sustainability); Common strategies to promote cultural asset (sustainable tourism);

Lisboa, 21 September: kick off meeting programme

Promotion of common systems to manage cultural heritage and landscape (urban and rural)

Strategic lines

Instruments

c. Creation of a working group on R&D

VII Framework Programme RST Cooperation Acitvities

Objectives

Priorities / project themes

Theme 4 Nanosciences, Project fiche from nanotechnologies, European textile Platform materials and new sent to all ACTE adherent production members

Kind of activities R&D activities; Technological transfer

Action Plan Calendar 2007

Technologies - nmp. Deadline for submission 04_05_2007. Secon call – autumn 2007


d. Creation of a working group on urban and strategic planning

To facilitate the exchange of experience and learning among city policy makers and practitioners in the field of sustainable urban development among local and regional authorities; Programma To disseminate URBACT II widely the Priorità Axis 2: attractive and experiences and cohesive cities. examples of good Operation 1. – practice collected by exchange and the cities, and learning especially the Instrument: lessons drawn from Thematic these projects and Network policies, and to ensure the transfer of know-how in the area of sustainable urban development; To assist policymakers and practitioners in the cities and managers of operational programmes under the Convergence and Competitiveness Objectives to define action plans on sustainable development of urban areas, which may be selected for Structural Funds programmes.

Integrated Development of sectoral urban policies housing, renewable energies, ICT, integrated transport policies; Integrated development of deprived areas – brownfields, inner cities, peripheral deprived areas; Social integration: managing immigration, young people, health, security, culture; Environmental issues: waste, improving monitoring of the environment, improving air quality; water quality and supply; moving to a recycling society; Governance and Urban Planning: town planning, multi-level government, citizens’ participation, territorial governance (horizontal and vertical)

Exchange of good practices

Autumn 2007 (Novembe) – first calls for proposals


Strategic lines

Thematic year 2007

Instruments

DG Employment and social Affairs Social dialogue and Industrial Relations. Budget heading 04.03.03.01

Objectives

To contribute to a better job quality and to improve European fashion industry competitiveness, providing a higher protection of human and environmental safety, through the elaboration of a European Action Plan focusing on health, safety and traceability of fashion products

Priorities / project themes

Kind of activities

Action Plan Calendar 2007

Collection and selection of the main normative aspects; studies researches carried out at European level Preparatory studies; Exchange of good practices in the field of health and sfety of TCL products; Draft of European Action Plan Dissemination: info campaign and final conference

Seminar of exchange of good practices on data collection; monitoring and surveillance, instruments for products traceability;

Constitution of 3 working groups traceability, data collection , monitoring; Elaboration of guidelines and drafting Action Plan Organisation of final conference

Deadline for applications 31/08/2007 Project ready, but not submitted


Annex XII

Programme of the final conference of the Twintex Museums projects Conference “TWINTEX Museums”. Prato,30 March 2007 Museo del Tessuto Via S. Chiara, 24 Prato (Italy)

9 – 9.30 Welcome and opening  Beatrice Magnolfi, Deputy Minister Innovation in Public Administration, Italian government  Andrea Cavicchi, President Foundation Museo del Tessuto di Prato  Fabio Giovagnoli, ACTE Executive Secretary 9.30 – 11.00

Session 1: Urban dimension of local development in 2007/2013 programming of European Structural Funds Chairperson: Alfonso Andria, MEP, Member Regional Affairs Committee Key note Speaker: Marco Orani, Head of Unit Urban Issues DG Regio, European Commission* 2007/2013 Cohesion Policy and towns: European policies and instruments to foster urban contribution to growth and employment in European regions

Discussant Panel:  1 Marco Romagnoli, Mayor of Prato (Italy)  2 Jerzy Kropiwnicki, Mayor of Lodz (Poland)  3 Pilar González Agapito, Deputy Mayor of Mataró (Spain) 11.30 – 13.00

Session 2: Textile Museums and European Towns: which role in programming local development? Chairperson: Andrea Lulli, Deputy Italian Parliament Key note Speaker: Eulalia Morral i Romeu, Director of Centre de Documentació i Museu Textil de Terrassa (Spain) Anna Mata, Responsible for External Relations and Tourism City hall of Terrassa (Spain)

Discussant Panel: Spin off effects of textile museums in the promotion of local development  Laura Fiesoli, Museo del Tessuto di Prato  Neven Muriel, Centre Touristique de la Laine et de la Mode de Verviers  Norah Mokrani, Musée d’Art et d’Industrie de Roubaix 13.00 – 14.30 Opening of exhibition “Towards a European Textile DNA”

14.30 – 16.00

Session 3: Private companies textile archives: searching for a European textile DNA, between historic memory and innovation Chairperson: Ambrogio Brenna, Councilor for Industry, Regione Toscana Key note Speaker: Filippo Guarini, Director of Museo del Tessuto di Prato Discussant Panel: Private companies textile archives and technologic innovation  Maria Teresa Gilardi, Director for external relations Zucchi Group  Federica Fornaciari, Max Mara Archives  Lorenzo Osti, Massimo Osti Spa Archives 16.00 – 16.45

Round Table: Perspectives of the European Textile Industry   

Claudio Martini – President, Regione Toscana Ottavio Festa Blanchet, Euratex (European Textile Employers Association) Valeria Fedeli, President ETUF: TCL (European Trade Union Federation Textiles, Clothing and Leather)


 Teo Romero, ACTE President Conclusions Mauro Agostini, Deputy Secretary for International Trade, Italian Government

TWINTEX Museums – thematic Workshops. Prato, 31 March, 2007. Museo del Tessuto Via S. Chiara, 24 Prato (Italy) 9.00 – 10.30 - Working Groups: 4) Textile heritage of twin towns having textile museums: a common protocol on European textile heritage o

Key note speaker: Marcin Oko, Deputy director Central Museum of Textiles of Lodz

5) Private companies and museums textile archives: towards a European DNA o

Key note speaker: Maria-Anne Privat Savigny

6) Textile productive identity and local development: towards the knowledge based economy o

Key note speaker: Massimo Bressan, Project Manager DISTRICT OCR – Interreg. IIIC South

10.30 – 10.45 Coffee break

10.45 – 12.00 Ending session of working groups

12.00 – 13.00 o o

13.00

Presentation of documents and conclusion of working groups Press conference

Lunch


Annex XIII

Activities report of the project Twintex Museums

Project TWINTEX Museums

The TWINTEX Museums project started with the collaboration between the Comune di Prato and the network of European textile cities that is headed by ACTE (European Textile Collectivities Association): introduced in 2006, it has been jointly financed by the European Commission through the Town-twinning Program. The project idea resulted from the consideration of the fact that transformations taking place at a global level (increased competitiveness; opening of markets; impact of globalization) is profoundly changing the morphology of the European manufacturing economy, in particular with regard to areas of production relating to the fashion system, among which figures apparel textiles. Cities constitute the main places that endure the consequences of such transformations: in fact, the fashion system production economy is organized in the form of industrial districts that have precisely as main fulcrum, urban areas. In order to understand the setting of these transformations, it is necessary to reflect on the role that textile cities will assume in the long term from the point of view of the physical organization of city spaces; of the consolidation of businesses directly connected to the manufacturing identity of these cities; or of the development of different local economies, that are marked by a break compared to the traditional ways of economic development of a city’s textile area. TWINTEX Museums sets as an objective "to promote the European textile cities as the centre of change - based on innovation, entrepreneurship and occupational growth – levering its role as textile museums to that of promoter of products, process innovation and encouraging the strengthening of the existing networks between local agencies, textile museums and economic partners". In that many institutions are specifically dedicated to the collection, study and exposure of testimonies to the productive history of the territories and their age old know how, the textile museums of the cities belonging to the ACTE network are structures that can play a key role key in increasing the value of the field’s knowledge patrimony. In particular, their patrimony and their added value activities represent documentary material useful to the development of information/training/learning in both the public sphere (exhibitions, shows for the local citizenship) as well as narrower spheres (training events in an entrepreneurial setting). The project tends to also highlight the existing nexuses between the textile patrimony and production know how, involving some of the textile enterprises whose textile archives may can constitute an important source of inspiration for the European industry, and whose recovery, mapping, increased value and network insertion can contribute to the reestablishment of a sort of DNA of European textile production. The main activity concerns the organization of a thematic conference that will take place on th st the premises of the Prato Textile Museum the 30 and 31 of March 2007.


st

1 day: General Conference. 30 March 2007 This day will be opened to the public and it will concentrate on three themes organised in as many sessions, regarding: 4) Financing opportunities with the new European Structural Funds relative to the solution of urban problems induced by the transformation of economies characterized by traditional production (in particular textiles) 5) The role of textile museums as agents of change at the local level 6) The connections between textile museums, the world of business and technological innovation st

The 1 working session, dedicated to the Urban dimension of local development in the 2007/2013 Programming of the European Structural Funds, is proposed to explore exactly what will be the policy and instruments that the European Union will make available in urban areas in textile transformation, on the basis of the Cohesion Policy for the period 2007/2013. In the course of this session the experiences of 3 textile cities members of ACTE, engaged on a path of change and urban transformation, on the basis of its own specificities will also be illustrated:  The case of Prato, that still today constitutes one of the principal textile producing districts in Europe, and that boasts a long experience in management of Structural Funds objective 2 to support of the local economic system;  The case of Lodz, among the main textile manufacturing cities of Poland, that will be engaged from 2007 in the management of the Structural Funds foreseen for the Convergence objective, will also face the issue of the re-conversion and/or re-use of abandoned manufacturing sites;  The case of Barcelona that constitutes one of the most significant experiences at the European level on the subject of city transformation and economic diversification, in virtue of the elaboration, management and implementation of strategic planning instruments. nd

The 2 working session “Textile museums and European cities: what role in promotion of local development?� It is proposed to explore the various approaches with which textile museums can contribute to the development of textile city economies. In particular, the results of research completed among the main textile museums of the member cities of the ACTE network will be illustrated in order to highlight aspects such as: the ability of the museums to act as promoters of the local productive identity, through the conservation of productive memory; the function of the museums as collectors for the diffusion and circulation of innovation, both in terms of production processes, as those of design and creativity. A very important aspect is in fact the relationship of the museums with the reference productive district, both when the latter has already exhausted or is exhausting it own competitiveness, as well as, for example in the case of Prato, which continues to carry out an important role in the economy of the territory. In the first case the museums can become the repositories of materials and knowledge, whose conservation is at risk by the unexpected economic transformations, while in the second case these functions are added to others that go toward integration between museum and district, between culture and production: -

the museum as a place of exhibition/promotion of the textiles contemporaneously produced by district companies. the museum as place of diffusion of technological content developed by the district the museum that values productive know how and favouring the spread of a new conservation sensitivity in order to avoid the scattering of documentary apparatus such as company archives and encouraging the valorisation for cultural, training or productive purposes


-

spin-off research and exploration of possible paths to diversification of economic development, that starting from the fashion system addresses fields with greater added value (tourism, advanced services to businesses, etc.).

This session will also be taking advantage of the contribution and the illustration of some experiences of European textile museums belonging to the network of ACTE cities. rd

Whereas, in regards to the 3 working session, relating to textile business archives: searching for European textile DNA, between historical memory and innovation, the results of research carried out on a sample of textile businesses operating in some of the territories of the ACTE network will be presented. The main objective of the session is in fact that of elaborating an analysis and study of the textile patrimony of the network’s museums, identifying findings of major significance for the productive history of the areas involved, with particular reference to materials relating to the period that goes from industrialization to the contemporary age. Through research it will be possible to carry out a first pilot census of the private archives of local companies with the aim to create a "map” of the production background of the ACTE network territory. The research will moreover allow the identification within company archives, taking part in the census, of textile samples of major significance for the productive history of the company, those that according to the company represent its own history and productive identity, and whose insertion in a network – thanks to the contribution of the subject members of ACTE – could represent a sort of DNA map of European textile production. Several representatives from Made in Italy leading textile companies have been will participate in the present session: their contribution will show how important is the role played by textile archives in defining contemporary productions. This session will above all constitute an opportunity to meet and exchange for fashion operatives, or those who work on development of textile design and creativity, and who find it necessary to draw inspiration from models or samples which constantly redefine contemporary tastes. At the end of the first day of work, the organization of a Round Table is foreseen entitled Perspectives for the European textile industry, that will have the goal of illustrating the policies and interventions to support the European clothing textile industry, and to compile a first review of the effects of opening the markets of the sector’s products, two years from their complete liberalisation. The round table will host representatives of territorial institutions; the Italian Government; representatives of European business associations and sector labour organizations. nd

2

day: Work Groups 31 March 2007

This day will be reserved for the project’s member partners; that is, in particular, the experts and representatives of the territory representatives members of the ACTE network. Three work groups will be established which will concentrate on the following areas of activities: 7) Textile patrimony of the twinned cities with textile museums: a common protocol on European textile patrimony: The goal of this work group is that of formulating a guide articulating programme points, and such as to identify intervention priorities to support, of valorisation, promotion and defence of the European textile patrimony. The document will be presented at the end of the day and signed by the representatives of the territories partners in the project, as common protocol on the European textile patrimony.


8) Textile archives of businesses and textile museums: towards a European productive DNA. This work group will instead take care of researching, analyzing and selecting a common methodology for the valorisation and insertion in a network of the textile archives coming from businesses and European textile museums. Particular care will be given to the examination and identification of the useful technologies for the digital cataloguing of textile archives of businesses and museums. 9) Productive textile identity and local development: towards a knowledge economy: The goal of this work group will instead be to illustrate how the use the knowledge patrimony developed by the textile manufacturing sector can contribute to the introduction of innovative action, aimed at the transition towards a knowledge economy (R&D, technological transfer).

Opening of Textile Exhibition Towards a European DNA During the celebration of the conference TWINTEX Museum, which will take place on Friday, 30 March 2007, also the Textile Exhibition Towards a European DNA will be opened. The exhibition will expose some of the a selection of the most significant textile materials coming from company and museum archives. Towards a European DNA is conceived as an itinerant and modular exhibition (therefore expandable with other contributions), that after the pratese event will circulate in the other member realities of the network and accompany the initiatives of the ACTE network, constituting in fact an operative future development of the present projected action.


Annex XIV

Eurotex project form

Eurotex ID Project Culture 2007 Programme Strand 1.2.1 – Cooperation Measures

 Project title: Eurotex ID – European Textile Identity Database  Coordinator: Museo del Tessuto di Prato  Partners: • • • • • •

ACTE; AMAVE, PT CCG Guimaraes, PT Escola Profissional CENATEX – Guimares, PT Winchester School of Art - University of Southampton, UK Centre de Documentaciò y Museu Textil de Terrassa, ES

 Total Budget : 398.893 €  EU Co-financing: 50%  Duration and Start of activities: 24 months, starting 28/11/2008  State of proposal: submitted to EC 31 October, 2007, under examination.  Project Short description: Eurotex ID main aim is to set up an initial interdisciplinary activity designed to rediscover and enhance the European textile industry of the 19th and 20th century, providing identification and valorization of European textile heritage; promoting long term among cooperation among cultural, institutional and economic operators; encouraging creative reinterpretation and circulation of young artists and of their project works. Starting the project, an overall selection, study and cataloguing of textile samples will be made, using textile archives from Prato and Terrassa Museums, and from Guimaraes. Textile samples catalogue will be then transformed in a digital database (EUROtex ID database), available for online consultation, providing specifications and details for items which, in turn, are highly representative of the production reality of their local territories of reference. Eurotex ID database will help young artists from design schools to get technical info about textile fabrics, but also to take inspiration in order to develop new design and products. Study and research on digital database will be coupled with specific courses on European Textile Heritage, within a close collaboration among textile museums experts and design schools professors. After the study and research phase, a selected group of 3 students from each design school will visit Guimaraes, Prato and Terrassa local museums and industrial districts. Study visits will allow students to get a direct access to textile heritage, and to participate in inspiration workshops, helping them to creative re-interpreting of textile samples and to developing of new textile designs.


Project works will be then realized using new designs inspired by textile samples previously catalogued. A final exhibition and a conference will take place, to show selected textile samples from museums, reinterpreting design and project works from design schools  General objective To set up an initial interdisciplinary activity designed to rediscover and enhance the European textile industry of the 19th and 20th century, providing identification and valorization of European textile heritage; promoting long term among cooperation among cultural, institutional and economic operators; encouraging creative reinterpretation and circulation of young artists project works.  Specific objectives: 1. To foster the European textile identity, through the development of a European textile identity database •

To identify, study and record in a database available for consultation online details of items from partner museum collections which are highly representative of the production reality of their local territories of reference. This database will eventually form the European Textile Identity Database; To establish the structural conditions necessary to extend European textile identity study and enhancement initiatives to other textile museums in Europe via the adoption of a standard European cataloguing system which may be used by all players, be they museums or textile companies still in business; To confirm the concept of European citizenship and encourage intercultural dialogue via enhancement of the common features of the European industrial textile heritage;

2. To enhance the cooperation among textile museums, fashion and design schools, institutional and economic partners, through the organization of study visits, the direct access to textile heritage and the industry •

• •

To set up structured cooperation initiatives involving partner museums in the enhancement of the 19th and 20th century textile sample books stored in their archives through the implementation of study, cataloguing and enhancement activities (including a final exhibition and a catalogue); To raise the awareness of local players in textile cities vis-à-vis the need to prevent loss of the know-how contained in the sample books of European textile companies; To establish structured cooperation initiatives involving museums and textile and fashion design schools in the planning of educational modules focusing on the history of the European textile industry with a view to enhancing the value of museum collections; To set up a European network of museums, fashion design schools, local authorities and textile companies with a view to enhancing and re-exploiting the local know-how of textile territories as means of facilitating the process of transition of European textile districts towards the knowledge-based economy.


3. To promote young artists’ creativity, through the design, realization and circulation of Eurotex ID inspired project works • •

To promote the transnational circulation of young designers (through study visits to museums) and works of art (final exhibition to be held in Prato); To encourage new generations of designers to turn to museum collections for inspiration when designing textiles and items of clothing with a view to reinterpreting European textile traditions and exploiting the relative know-how according to a contemporary, creative approach.


Annex XV

European Fashion Security Action Plan project form

EUropean Fashion Security Action Plan (EU. Fa.St. A.P.)

Context of Announcement PROGRAMME: Budget heading 04.03.03 - Industrial relations and social dialogue SUBPROGRAMME: Improving expertise in the field of industrial relations

Project aims and activities Main aim To contribute to a better job quality and to improve European fashion industry competitiveness, providing a higher protection of human and environmental safety, through the elaboration of a European Action Plan focusing on health, safety and traceability of fashion products.

Specific Objective 1: To promote and to share a common definition for risk arising from Textile Clothing Leather Footwear products (TCL) , focusing on the collection, selection and analyse of current legislation, scientific studies and initiatives at European level, and translating it into priorities for action. Activities: st o 1 seminar: constitution of a Steering Committee and set up of work programme; o Collection and compared study of most relevant European and national legislation concerning safety of products, with particular regard to textile, clothing, leather and footwear products; o Collection and compared study of main initiatives taken at European and national level, concerning health and safety of products (certification, voluntary labels, etc.); o Collection and selection of scientific studies and reports concerning health and safety of products; o Preparation and selection of themes and normative aspects to be implemented; nd o 2 seminar: - Sharing of materials, studies, norms and regulations; - Definition of priorities for action; - Constitution of working groups, focusing on: data collection; monitoring and surveillance systems; instruments for product traceability.

Specific Objective 2: To elaborate an action plan aiming at the enhancement of health and safety conditions of fashion system products, promoting the exchange of good practices and improving expertise in the field of industrial relations, with particular regard to data collection, monitoring and surveillance systems, product traceability.


Activities: o o o o o o

WG 1: definition of procedures and methodologies for data and info collection, regarding the use of dangerous substances in fashion system production; WG2: definition, knowledge and application of monitoring and surveillance systems on health and safety of fashion system products; WG 3: definition, knowledge and application of instruments for product traceability; 3rd Seminar: presentation and discussion of WG1; WG2; WG3 Collection of experiences and elaboration of an action plan on health, safety and traceability of products. Final conference: dissemination of results, presentation of document for recommendations.

Resume During the last years, a greater attention has been paid in the EU to improve quality and security production for textile, clothing, leather and footwear products and accessories – the latest, being the introduction of Reg. EU 1907/2006 (REACH). The elimination of tariff barriers however exposes the sector to new risks due to the entry in trade of textile, clothing, leather and footwear products whose production process is outside the control, since they often use products and processes which are no longer permitted in Europe. Therefore, an improvement of conditions at work is needed, ensuring a high level of protection for human health and the environment in TCL sectors, through the participation of all social and economic partners, research centres, and universities, local and regional public authorities. This, in turn, could lead to an overall improvement of job quality and of industry competitiveness at the EU level. As far as health and safety are concerned, a greater attention to and a clearer collective knowledge about the use of chemicals in production cycles - coupled with controls certified by public authorities - would surely reduce risks of professional diseases of workers, and better guarantee consumers’ health at the EU level. With this purpose, the project aims to promote a common initiative at European level for the improvement of health and safety conditions of TCL products on the EU market, through a continuous monitoring of substances used in the production cycles and in the final products, and of potential effects for workers’ and consumers’ health. This means, in particular, to start up a self evaluation process which can in turn help companies to enhance their competitiveness, avoiding potential risks arising from un-safe or un-health products. The project also wants to address specific attention to the exchange of good practices, improving the diffusion of expertise already gained in some EU Member States for what concerns the creation of systems to control and monitor health and safety compliance for TCL products. In the preparatory phase (month 1-5), a Steering Committee will be constituted among all European economic, social and territorial partners of the concerned sectors, under the coordination of ACTE. The Steering Committee will be assisted by a Scientific Committee (coordinated by Associazione Tessile e Salute), composed by experts of scientific research; universities; companies, with the aim to provide technical and scientific assistance to project activities, with particular regard to the exchange of good practices, and the improvement of expertise in the industrial relations. Starting the project, the Steering Committee will meet with the coordinator of the scientific st committee in a 1 seminar, with the aim to: develop work programme; define roles, competences, responsibilities of partners; providing time schedules for the following areas of


study:

1. EU and national norms and regulations concerning the use of dangerous substances in the TCL sectors; 2. Main initiatives promoted at European level on product health and safety (certifications, voluntary labels, etc.); 3. Studies and reports on products health and safety, elaborated at the sectoral levels. All materials collected in the three areas of study (regulations; study and reports; initiatives at EU and national level) will be carefully analysed, in order to proceed to a selection of all aspects that may need technical, procedural, normative implementation (month 4-5). As a result of this phase: nd

After the conclusion of the preparatory phase, a 2 Seminar will take place among the Steering Committee and the coordinator of the Scientific Committee, in order to share the most relevant info selected, and to define priorities for action for each of the areas concerned. In particular, 3 thematic working groups will be constituted, focusing on the following aspects: 1. Procedures and methodologies for data and info collection/use, regarding dangerous substances; 2. Control/ surveillance systems on product health and safety; 3. Instruments for product traceability. Working groups will be coordinated by Associazione Tessile e Salute, to collect, elaborate and promote the diffusion of experiences developed in the Member States (months 5-8). Particular regard will be given to those methodologies and practices focusing on social and economic partners’ inclusion, thus relying on industrial relations schemes, through the exchange of best practices, and the selection of an excellence study case, in each of the areas concerned. At the end of this phase, a third seminar will take place – with the contribution of all project partners – to promote the diffusion of the excellence study cases, and to prepare specific conclusions for each of the three areas. During the follow up, all experiences presented in the seminar will be collected, and a draft document containing guidelines for an European Action Plan on Health, Safety and Traceability on TCL will be elaborated. Work will be coordinated by the Steering Committee and Associazione Tessile e Salute; the latter being responsible for collecting contributions and proposals coming from Scientific Committee members. As a result from the follow up, the European Action Plan on Health, Safety and Traceability on TCL recommendation document will be produced, presented and discussed in a Final Conference, with the participation of representatives from European institutions (European Commission, European Parliament, European Economic and Social Committee, Committee of the Regions), including consumers organisations, to provide a greater debate on health, safety and traceability of textile, clothing, leather and footwear products, thus addressing conclusions also to TCL products final users, European citizens and consumers.

Key actors_ partnership 1. Steering Committee 1 2 3 4 5

ACTE: project leader and Coordinator of Steering Committee Local authorities: partner EURATEX – partner EUTC:TCF – partner UEAPME - partner


2. Scientific Committee         

Associazione Tessile e salute - coordinatore Tecnotessile Istituto Buzzi Federchimica Unitex Istituto Superiore SanitĂ  (ISS) ISPESL ISPRA LEITAT


En activities report final