36th International trade fair for building machines
O P X E T A f o M s t h g i l h g i H MORE THAN 350 EXHIBITORS AND 1,400 BRANDS MACHINES IN ACTION ON THE DEMO ZONE A TESTING COURSE FOR TRUCKS all machines, vehicles and accessories for road construction, recycling, cleaning and civil engineering
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Building and politics debated at MATEXPO
A look back at the conference fvb-ffc Constructiv hosted during MATEXPO
Facts & figures P22
MATEXPO CafĂŠ P24 P7
MATEXPO innovation and green awards P10
Bouwunie & Grondwijzer goes MATEXPO 2015
FORWORD CHAIRMAN Johan Verhelst
Dear Reader, It is with great pride that I present the first edition of the MATEXPO Magazine. The intention is to enable you to look back at the fair that has just finished. In addition to a summary of several quite fascinating talks, you will also find lots of photos, figures, quotes etc. Let’s take a brief look at the fair. There is new and young blood in the Board of Directors, with Filip Vereecke as deputy chairman and Peter Caset as managing director, and there is also a new general director, Gregory Olszewski. With this new team we worked on achieving more of our aims: more foreign exhibitors and visitors, retaining our position as the largest machine fair in the Benelux, and focusing even more on quality and service. It is no longer possible to expand the size of the fair, but we can increase the variation in the range presented.
I was particularly pleased to observe that, apart from anything else, a lot of business was done at MATEXPO 2015. High-quality visitors made sure that the almost 400 exhibitors were able to establish worthwhile contacts every day. A great many new orders were taken and it was striking that the visitors also felt positive about the future. Although we still have to face considerable challenges, including the reduction in government investment, I nevertheless experienced an increase in optimism in the building sector. Whether it’s in road building, civil engineering or general building, everyone wants to move forward. In addition, the many new technologies on display are fuelling this optimism. MATEXPO has never before seen so many entries for the Innovation and Green Awards. It is proof that manufacturers of machines and equipment are investing heavily in research and development. And of course this is to the advantage of users: their work will be faster, more ecological and more efficient. And everyone gains from that. I hope you enjoy reading this first MATEXPO Magazine and am already looking forward to meeting you at the 37th MATEXPO from 6 to 10 September 2017!
“MATEXPO HAS NEVER BEFORE SEEN SO MANY ENTRIES FOR THE INNOVATION AND GREEN AWARDS” Johan Verhelst | chairman MATEXPO BOARD
ABOUT MATEXPO Gregory Olszewski, Managing Director since June 2014, is proud to present the MATEXPO 2015 team:
â€œIt was a privilege for me to come and work for MATEXPO, a trade fair with such a long and rich history. I found it important to respect certain traditions while at the same time, I was given the possibility to make improvements where necessary. Of course, when doing so, you have to be able to rely on a whole team. For 2015, these were the people who gave their best to make MATEXPO a success for all our exhibitors, visitors and partners:
1. Gregory Olszewski, Managing Director
7. Tine Claerbout, in charge of Services and Support
2. Marc Steppe, sales
8. Kaat Buysse, Services and Support
3. Carl Vanginderhuysen, deputy project manager
9. Alain Henni, deputy project manager
4. Anthony Salembier,
10. Roel Proesmans, project manager in charge of Operations
jacks of all trades
5. Alexandra Demeulemeester, in charge of side events
11. Paulien Sigiez, jacks of all trades
Liselotte Casteur, conversation manager (not on photo)
Jim MattheeĂźs, deputy project manager
Of course, I also want to thank all our loyal suppliers who helped us achieve our goals!"
A LOOK BACK AT THE CONFERENCE FVB-FFC CONSTRUCTIV HOSTED DURING MATEXPO
On Saturday 5 September, fvb-ffc Constructiv’s regional department for the province of West-Flanders organised a conference at the MATEXPO trade fair, like it does every two years. Before delving into the conference theme of the New World of Work, we had the pleasure of welcoming Flemish education minister Hilde Crevits, who signed the new cooperation agreement between the education sector and the wood and construction industry. This new cooperation should result in an even higherquality schooling for pupils in technical, vocational and special secondary education, so that they can have better access to a job in the construction or wood industry. On behalf of the social partners, Katharina Van der Helst pointed out that the industry plans to increase the quality of construction education in various ways, including by investing in innovative propositions from schools and by enhancing further training for teachers. That, of course, was music to the ears of minister Crevits, who aims to stimulate on-the-job training and to deepen the interaction between the education and the economic world. The cooperation agreement was also officially signed by Rik Hinnens on behalf of the construction industry and fvb-ffc Constructiv and Wim Van Goethem on behalf of the wood industry and its training centre OCH-CFB. After this formal moment, it was time for a brain exercise to find out what motivates us to work, a theme we already discussed during last year’s Back To The Future conference. The panel of speakers included three successful construction company managers from different Flemish provinces: Jo Beneens (manager of Beneens, situated in Olen), Francis Verstraete (manager of Verstraetehout en -bouw, situated in Roeselare) and Karel Derde (manager of Derde Construct, situated in Wichelen). The featured keynote speaker was Wouter Torfs, CEO of the popular shoe chain Torfs. A small survey of the audience immediately revealed the importance of freedom, responsibility and trust. All panellists already apply these three cornerstones in their own company: they do not push their staff into a purely executive role, but stimulate them to be true ‘thoers’ (a contrac-
“THIS NEW COOPERATION SHOULD RESULT IN AN EVEN HIGHER-QUALITY SCHOOLING FOR PUPILS IN TECHNICAL, VOCATIONAL AND SPECIAL SECONDARY EDUCATION” tion of ‘thinkers’ and ‘doers’). The companies all have an open corporate culture in which the managers create room for new initiatives. Moreover, a simplified organisation structure with a minimum of intermediaries allows clear and simple communication between the management and the workplace. The entrepreneurs also make time for fun and relaxation; a drink to close off a day of hard work is allowed from time to time. All these elements contribute to a pleasant work climate, which in turn reflects positively on the clients. That is how our panellists stand out from their competitors. P6> MATEXPOMAGAZINE
When asked if a company manager still has a role to play with all those autonomous ‘thoers’, the panellists answered that the manager is the company’s spokesperson towards the outside world. He also keeps watch over the company’s values and mission and permanently words them clearly and unambiguously, regardless of the industry in which his company operates.
nical skills as well as soft skills. The department manager also addressed the social partners, for they provide the industry and fvb-ffc Constructiv with a framework for exercising their activities. We hope that the conference has inspired and motivated them and that they will continue to put their confidence in us, so that we can continue to further expand our know-how and to permanently support our vibrant industry.
As a last part of the conference, Tatjana Samaey, fvb-ffc Constructiv’s department manager for the province of West-Flanders, formulated fvbffc Constructiv’s mission for the coming year: we take up the challenge of implementing the new cooperation agreement and translating it into practice, in collaboration with the schools. A regional team of fvb-ffc Constructiv is available in every province to help construction companies translate all construction workers’ intentions concerning their competency management into a concrete action and training plan, in terms of tech-
After the conference, the guests had the opportunity to network while enjoying a snack and a drink.
“WE TAKE UP THE CHALLENGE OF IMPLEMENTING THE NEW COOPERATION AGREEMENT AND TRANSLATING IT INTO PRACTICE, IN COLLABORATION WITH THE SCHOOLS.”
MATEXPO INNOVATION AND GREEN AWARDS THE FINALISTS For the fifth time now, MATEXPO – the largest plant and equipment trade show in the Benelux – has been on the lookout for inventive exhibitors. There are two awards up for grabs at the show: the MATEXPO Innovation Award, which is designed to reward the biggest technical innovation at MATEXPO, and the Green Award, which is presented to the most environmentally friendly machine or innovation on display at the show.
"THIS YEAR, THERE WAS NO LACK OF CHOICE: 19 ENTRIES WERE SUBMITTED FOR THE INNOVATION AWARD AND 15 FOR THE GREEN AWARD" The award process began with a panel of judges, made up of professionals from the world of plant and equipment, who assessed the entries to make sure they qualified properly. This year, there was no lack of choice: 19 entries were submitted for the Innovation Award and 15 for the Green Award. The applications themselves were particularly varied, ranging from a system for retreading large sizes of off-road tyres to a giant truck. The next step was to select five nominees for each category. Both awards naturally must involve a genuine new innovation, rather than just a variation on a theme or a “copy” of a machine that already exists. For the Innovation Award, the machine or process must have been introduced no later than the previous year and must already be in production. For the Green Award, the entry must make a positive contribution to the quality of the environment, either by actively improving the world around us or by reducing the amount of pollution produced by the product. The entry must consist of at least a working prototype and it must have been introduced to the Belgian market since MATEXPO 2013. Naturally it is expected that all of the entries will be on display at MATEXPO 2015.
CARE FOR THE ENVIRONMENT When we look more closely at the entries, we can see that the environmental aspect of the products is of great importance for most manufacturers, including for the entries competing for the Innovation Award. Most of the innovations relate to generating a reduction in costs. This generally involves more economical fuel or power consumption and hence a reduced effect on the environment. In most cases, this energy efficiency goes hand in hand with ease of use and functionality – which naturally can only be positive.
However, simply optimising an existing machine or making it more energy-efficient is not sufficient to win an award. Anyone wanting to make the shortlist has to come up with something that is genuinely new. This means that the judging panel had to examine each entry to see whether it really is a new product or process. As a result, something that already exists in a different form – and hence has merely been ‘reinterpreted’ – cannot be considered for the award. After in-depth consultation, two sets of five nominees were put forward for the MATEXPO Awards 2015. We will introduce them to you below in alphabetical order.
GREEN AWARD ATLAS COPCO QLB 60 EXHIBITOR: ATLAS COPCO Lighting masts have become part and parcel of the modern worksite. And these days, LED lights are used extensively. LEDs blend low power consumption and long service life with an immediate, high intensity of light. In contrast with more traditional halogen or mercury vapour lights, they are also better able to resist shocks. A timer, light sensors, economical generator and LED technology all increase autonomy, reduce consumption and are environmentally friendly. The latest development in this area is presented by Atlas Copco, with the QLB 60 light mast. Four LED lamps with an output of 350 W and particularly optical elements deliver the same light intensity as four 1000 W metal halide lamps. The power source is an air-cooled 3.5 kW Hatz motor. The manufacturer claims that this light mast is up to 71% more economical than its traditional counterpart. It also offers lower operating and maintenance costs and is less expensive to transport and install.
JCB INTEL-HYBRID GENERATOR EXHIBITOR: VANDAELE MACHINERY Because generators usually only have to deal sporadically with peak power requirements and hence tend to be too heavy for run-of-themill work and consume excessive amounts of fuel, JCB has developed a hybrid generator, which is fitted with special batteries. These batteries are charged by the generator at times when the motor is able to do so efficiently. When the demand for power is low, the motor cuts out automatically and the batteries take over. It then starts up again if the demand for power increases or the power stored in the batteries drops below 50%. This means that up to 30% can easily be saved, depending on the application and the motor may also remain out of service for many hours a day, meaning that maintenance costs are reduced and the service life of the system increases accordingly. It is also a good way of supplying power when there are noise restrictions in place, such as at night. This new product is presented by Vandaele Machinery. P8> MATEXPOMAGAZINE
MATEXPO INNOVATION AWARD 2015
1. WINNER | Liebherr LiUP 200 | Van Der Spek 2. RSS Rail Safety Systems | Heli
3. Caterpillar MH3037 overslagkraan | Bergerat Monnoyeur
4. Montabert Anti-Seismisch BRV-systeem | Tramac 5. MOL kipoplegger Ellips Hardox 500
LOCQUET POWER & LIGHT BATTERY PACK EXHIBITOR: LOCQUET Locquet is a regular nominee for the MATEXPO Awards. In 2013, the company won the Green Award with a hybrid power generator that uses a fuel cell. For this edition of the show, Locquet is presenting a system that is comparable on many points with the JCB hybrid system. The company claims that it is the first commercially usable hybrid power-generating system on the Belgian market, opting to use products from the UK manufacturer, Firefly Clean Energy. The system consists of a standard generator that stores the surplus energy produced in an external battery. Ideal for providing electricity 24/7 where there is a varying demand for power. The array of battery packs available ranges from a 3 kVA single phase unit, to the 24 kVA “BatPack Large” 3-phase 48 kWh battery buffer that can be combined with a diesel generator ranging from 45 kVA to 100 kVA.
QUALITY PUMPS SIP 100-4 ECOMIZER PRO EXHIBITOR: QUALITY PUMPS A PLC pump controller that adjusts the revs of the diesel motor autonomously and automatically (and hence the output of the wastewater pump) based on the influx or level of the liquid to be pumped out. This SIP (Screw Impeller Pump) is controlled by a pressure sensor that transmits signals to a control box, which in turn regulates the motor revs, placing the unit in “standby” mode if necessary. Saves fuel and cuts down on noise.
WACKER NEUSON AS30 AND AS5 EXHIBITOR: WACKER NEUSON This manufacturer of products such as compaction equipment is the first to market electrically powered vibration rammers that operate by battery, using long-life lithium iron phosphate batteries. The manufacturer claims that even after 1500 charging cycles they still deliver 80% of their power. With a fast-charger, the battery recharges in one hour. The AS30 and AS50 compactors also generate minimal noise when operating and produce no 8
exhaust gases, which is an immense advantage with trench compaction or when working in enclosed spaces.
INNOVATION AWARD CATERPILLAR MH3037 MATERIAL HANDLER EXHIBITOR: BERGERAT MONNOYEUR Caterpillar importer Bergerat Monnoyeur is introducing a new material handler that is distinguished by a cab that can be lowered all the way down to the ground for easy, safe entry by the operator. Modern material handlers are now equipped as standard with a moving cab that gives the operator an unobstructed view of the work he is doing, preferably as high and far out in front of the machine as possible. But this is the first time that designers have thought to adapt the mechanism so that the cab can be placed on the ground for easy walk-in by the operator. A really ingenious idea.
LIEBHERR LIUP 200 EXHIBITOR: VAN DER SPEK When tower crane elevators are assembled (still not mandatory in Belgium), they are attached to the outside of the tower section. Tower crane specialist Liebherr now has its own integrated solution, introduced by importer Van Der Spek. The LiUp 200 is attached to the inside of the tower section using elements of a minimum 2.3 x 2.3 m (if the tower section is smaller, the elevator is assembled on the outside). This delivers a significant series of advantages. First of all, the “connect & work” system means minimal assembly time, with the cabling preinstalled. The elevator itself moves up and down a dual rack system, i.e. without cables. The elevator also provides easy, safe access to the tower platform. The lifting power of 200 kg is sufficient to carry 2 people. It is built into the existing tower elements and only the platforms have to be adjusted or replaced to enable the elevator to pass. Both the crane and elevator can be ser-
MATEXPO GREEN AWARD 2015
1. WINNER Wacker Neuson AS30 en AS50
2. JCB Intel-Hybrid Generator | Vandaele Machinery
3. Quality Pumps SIP 100-4 Ecomizer Pro
4. Locquet Power & Light Battery Pack
5. Atlas Copco QLB 60 lichtmast
vices by the same engineers, because the machinery is made by the same manufacturer. The elevator is powered by electricity and has its own lithium-ion battery system that continues to operate even if there is a power cut. The elevator reaches a speed of 25 m per minute and can, of course, also be called from the crane cab. There is a recharging point at the base of the tower and up to 40% of the energy used is recovered as the elevator descends.
MOL ELLIPS HARDOX 500 TIPPER EXHIBITOR: MOL Round tippers have already been on the market for a number of years, but are constantly being improved. Standard advantages are a lower centre of gravity and high torsional stiffness. The Belgian manufacturer MOL is introducing a tipper with an innovative design, which attracted the attention of the judges: the hopper is not just round, but conical, too: wider at the back than at the front. To make dumping the load even easier, the front of the hopper is set at an additional oblique angle (21.5°). Most tipper hoppers are made from Hardox 400 or 450 steel, whereas MOL has opted for the even more hardwearing Hardox 500. In terms of ergonomics, there is also a swinging, folding ladder that reaches all the way down to the ground.
MONTABERT ANTI-SEISMIC BRV SYSTEM EXHIBITOR TRAMAC Montabert importer Tramac introduces the Anti-Seismic BRV system – an electronic system that regulates the power of the jackhammer based on the amount of vibration generated. The system uses sensors located in sensitive zones (fragile structures, etc.) that reduce the power of the jackhammer in line with the instructions of the contractor. Limiting the striking power can be adjusted according to the level of vibrations, as well as via other receptors, such as noise. When working in sensitive surroundings, contractors are usually required to call on the services of a
laboratory to provide constant seismic measurements, but naturally this also involves a cost factor. With this system, a lab is no longer required.
RSS RAIL SAFETY SYSTEM EXHIBITOR: HELI Heli introduces a simple fence to be used at railway worksites. RSS, or Rail Safety System, is an easy-to-erect fencing system for works along railway lines. The system features a magnet with a tractive force of up to 600 kg, making it quick and easy to assemble. What charmed the judges in particular is the fact that there is no more fiddling with brackets that have to be attached under the rails – or any other labour-intensive operations, for that matter. Simply “stick” the magnet to the side of the rail – it couldn’t be simpler. This patented system, which has already been approved by various railway companies, is made from high-grade galvanised steel. And because the magnet has a tractive force of up to 600 kg, the brackets can be released in a single arm movement.
“WITH INNOVATION THAT’S CONSTANTLY ON THE MOVE, MATEXPO IS A BAROMETER FOR THE SECTOR AND A SOURCE OF INSPIRATION FOR EVERY CONTRACTOR” Charly Vanmassenhove | Group Delrue
“ALL IMPORTANT PLAYERS ON THE BELGIAN MARKET ARE A MEMBER OF OUR FEDERATION.”
SIGMA For many years, Sigma has been the reference regarding machines used for civil engineering, construction and material handling. In 2014 Sigma included 75 members: 33 (28+5) in the Material handling section and 49 (44+5) in the Civil engineering/Construction section. 5 members joined both sections. The Generators subsection includes 9 members some of which are also a member of the Civil engineering/Construction section. Importers of equipment used in the different sectors are thus well represented: all important players on the Belgian market are a member of our federation. Our members employ 2,785 persons. This is a decrease of 1% compared to 2013. The total turnover of all our activities amounted to 1,200 million Euro. This is a very slight increase compared to the previous year. However, one observes the increase in both the civil engineering and material handling sections. When we compare the turnover of the last 10 years, we can conclude that for civil engineering this result is average, for material handling 2014 was, just like 2013, a positive year. When we look at the civil engineering section in detail, we see that 2014 ended with a total turnover of 692 million Euro. (FIG. 1)
EVOLUTION TURNOVER CIVIL ENGINEERING IN €
EVOLUTION TURNOVER MATERIAL HANDLING IN €
500.000.000 450.000.000 400.000.000 350.000.000 300.000.000 250.000.000 200.000.000 150.000.000
For material handling 2014 proved to be another positive year. Whereas in the last two years, the market stabilized, in 2014 there was a growth of the turnover. With a total sale of 9,015 lift trucks, 2014 shows an increase of 7.2 % or 602 trucks compared to 2013. Sigma expects that the market of material handling will keep steady compared to 2014. (FIG. 2)
EVOLUTION EMPLOYMENT SIGMA-MEMBERS
3000 2750 2500 2250 2000 1750
ACTIVITIES In 2014 Sigma also kept carrying out its main tasks: • Our meetings allow our members to meet and to discuss about common issues; • Updating the statistics of the machines sold by our members; • Working groups for prevention & safety as well as HR-issues; • Promoting and elaborating our own safety-label SigmaCert; • Structural partner of Prologistics and MATEXPO; • Networking opportunities and contacts with stakeholders.
WORKING GROUPS HR Once again our HR working group has been very active in 2014. In September we organised a round table with the unions around the theme “service technicians”. This allowed us to discuss all the challenges (age pyramid, inflow and exit, education, etc.) in preparation of the social negotiations that will take place in 2015. As member of the global federation Traxio, Sigma is an active participant in these negotiations. In 2014 the negotia-
tions went quite painstakingly, but an agreement was finally reached. The contribution of Sigma was considerable, especially on the part of service technicians. The negotiations for 2015 will start in January and Traxio and Sigma would like to thank all the representatives for their contribution.
PREVENTION Our working group Prevention was equally active in 2014. This platform enables our members to exchange experiences and to share best practices on safety and prevention. Our members highly appreciate the interaction of the meetings (on location, case studies) .
NEW SUBSECTION IN CLEANING MACHINES In September 2014 it was decided to create a new subsection for cleaning machines, Cleanma.be. This new subsection is a logical step for Sigma. Not only are a number of Sigma members importers of these machines, but external companies also saw the benefit of joining our federation. On top of this, there was no professional association that represented the interests of these importers.
BOUWUNIE & GRONDWIJZER GO MATEXPO 2015
We were pleased to be at MATEXPO once again with Bouwunie & Grondwijzer. We tried to satisfy our members’ wishes with a stand where we organised several seminars, a reception and, in the weekend, entertainment After all, we think it’s important that our stand should be ‘seen’ by chance passers-by at the fair. In association with One-Two, we organised a seminar on good price calculation using effective time registration.
"‘ONE TWO WORK’ HELPS BUILDING COMPANIES TAKE THE RIGHT DECISIONS” Setting prices and recalculation in the building sector can cause quite a few headaches. After all, the building contractor is faced every day with a complex combination of work under state control, work based on tenders, unforeseen extras, actual hours worked, travel and an abundance of materials. Keeping track of all this is no easy task. Certainly not for anyone who still does it by hand on countless pieces of paper, in notebooks or diaries.
THE PROPORTION OF HOURS OF WORK IN THE PRICE During the presentation, Kristof Wittouck emphasised the fact that hours of work determine almost 70% of the total price of a job. A mistake or something forgotten in this area can therefore have serious consequences for the profitability of a building contractor. Another advantage of One Two Work that should not be underestimated was explained on the basis of actual day-to-day situations. This is the fact that the system enables one to take the right decisions regarding planned investments. Especially when these investments are largely based on hours of work. One Two Work immediately makes the possible income, time saved and cost-recovery of the investment clear and tangible.
ANALYSIS OF COSTS AND INCOMES To make it clear that there is a simple and reliable solution to this problem, One Two Concept organised a well-attended seminar during MATEXPO 2015. Kristof Wittouck, manager of this company from Moorslede, gave a detailed demonstration of One Two Work, a unique and handy system for direct and simple registration of all the main parameters. One Two Work makes it possible to record jobs, hours of work and materials, draw up more meticulous quotes, carry out conclusive recalculations and above all to invoice quicker and more accurately. 12
CARRY OUT WORK ONESELF OR CONTRACT IT OUT? The decision to carry out a specific job oneself or to contract it out is also made much easier with One Two Work. When it comes to bricklaying for facades or internal walls, for example. One thing you have to take into account in any case is that if you build the walls yourself and afterwards there turns out to be a manufacturing fault in the bricks, you will yourself
The cooperation between MATEXPO and Bouwunie-Grondwijzer is a structural relationship from which both benefit. The trade fair organisation is able to appeal to the right target group in a focused way and we, as a federation, can enhance our profile as Flanders’ largest SME building federation.
be responsible for the expensive and time-consuming repair work. If you have the walls prefabricated by another company, you shift the responsibility to your supplier/subcontractor. Decisions like these have to be taken very precisely, and One Two Work provides you with a well-founded basis for your calculations. The interest shown by the audience and the many questions that were asked made it clear that this is an issue that occupies the minds of contractors in the building and/or finishing trades. Knowing exactly what something costs, and even more what it will yield, is a question to which One Two Work can give a conclusive answer. During the well-attended reception, Jan Coussement, chairman of the West Flanders Building Union, celebrated the years of work put in by an extremely praiseworthy teacher, José Sioen of the VTI in Kortrijk.
During the weekend we took a completely different approach. We asked our mascots ‘Building’ and ‘Union’ to bring a smile to the visitors’ faces while also giving them some useful information. The children didn’t leave empty-handed either, having received a fun balloon.
NAVB-CNAC CONSTRUCTIV One out of three serious occupational accidents in the construction sector is due to a fall from heights of persons and of objects: every year, over 550 workers are concerned. Reason enough for navb-cnac Constructiv (navb), the prevention institute of the Construction Sector in Belgium, together with the Federal Public Service Employment, Labour and Social Dialogue (FOD WASO) to launch their new campaign ‘Working at Heights Safely’ (Veilig werken op hoogte) during the official opening of MATEXPO on September 1, 2015 in Courtrai.
This campaign aims to raise awareness and to inform everyone involved of the risks and prevention measures relating to working at heights. During the campaign period (Sept. 2015 to Aug. 2017), targeted actions are organized to try and drastically reduce the number of occupational accidents due to falling from heights. During their construction site visits (10,000 /year), the navb-advisors will pay special attention to specific prevention measures to prevent occupational accidents due to falling from heights.
“THE AIM IS TO RAISE AWARENESS AND TO INFORM EVERYONE INVOLVED OF THE RISKS AND PREVENTION MEASURES RELATING TO WORKING AT HEIGHTS.” Furthermore navb is developing specific publications, training programs, toolbox packages, etc. to support workers, employers and prevention advisers. Not only can the campaign count on the support of the social partners of the construction industry, there is also a close collaboration with a great number of other organizations that play an important role in wellbeing on construction sites, among them the Association of Scaffolding Companies in Belgium (VSBB). Like they did for their previous campaign, navb created a comic book hero called Bas Harnas to assist, advice and accompany all parties concerned on construction sites by providing best practices. A wide range of other products is available on the website www.basharnas.be and you can follow the campaign on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter (#BasHarnas).
For more than 50 years, navb-cnac Constructiv has been the prevention institute of the construction sector in Belgium: Navb assists construction companies and their employees in the development and the implementation of a prevention policy. This policy serves a double goal: the prevention of occupational accidents and diseases while protecting the work capacity of the employees.
BUILDING AND POLITICS DEBATED AT MATEXPO In Belgium, government investment has been below average for years. What are the regions going to do about it? The Confederation asked Ben Weyts (Flemish Minister of Transport) and Christophe Lacroix (Walloon Minister of Budgets). This debate on building and politics took place during a seminar that the Confederation organised at the MATEXPO machine fair on 2nd September. The seminar was given the title Government investment: Stop? or Go! and this concisely summarised the key question. For some building companies, including road builders, the lack of government investment is gradually starting to assume disturbing proportions. Especially because our governments have for years invested little compared to the rest of the European Union, as Robert de Mûelenaere (managing director of the Building Confederation) told the audience at MATEXPO.
Construction Confederation Construction, Energy & Environment
Robert de Mûelenaere: ‘The Belgian government’s annual investment is about 2.1% of GDP. Which is a lot less than the European average of 3.75%. Our government investment has been lower than the average for more than ten years, although our need for transport and infrastructure is continually increasing.’
DANGER OF DECLINE The World Economic Forum has put Belgian infrastructure in seventeenth place out of more than a hundred and forty countries. This does not look bad. But the basis for comparison with our country is Europe and not the other side of the world, and our infrastructure is not up to the standards of our neighbours. According to Jean-Pierre Liebaert (Building Confederation research dept.), it has to contend with a serious handicap with regard to the competition. Jean-Pierre Liebaert: ‘This seems to be due to our roads and railways. And what is even more disturbing is that there are indications that their quality is declining. That does not necessarily mean their intrinsic quality is lower than it was, but that even in the best cases, our roads and railways are not able to keep up with overall developments, which means they get a lower score.’ So our governments still have a lot of work to do if our country is to catch 16
“BELGIUM HAS HIGH GOVERNMENT EXPENDITURE BUT LOW GOVERNMENT INVESTMENT.” Robert de Mûelenaere: Managing director of the Building Confederation
up and raise itself to the level of the European average. Especially since we fell far behind the leading group a long time ago. Our governments have been investing too little for at least a quarter of a century. Jean-Pierre Liebaert: ‘Over the last thirty years, Belgian government investment has only just been able to compensate for the natural depreciation of our public capital stock, whereas among our neighbours it was increasing. So over these thirty years we have built up an investment deficit. Taking the 1970-2015 period, this amounts to €80 billion. That’s 20% of GDP.’
Government investment: Stop? Or Go! – Jef Lembrechts, Colette Golinvaux, Ben Weyts, Marc Dillen, Christophe Lacroix and Francis Carnoy.
FLANDERS Belgium is a complicated country and so there are many different governments and governmental entities that engage in investment. Flanders has in the meantime determined which projects will be given priority in the future. To a certain extent they respond to our sector’s complaints. Ben Weyts (Minister of Transport and Public Works) holds the view that investment should in the first place put the emphasis on road safety and access to employment. Ben Weyts: ‘We have to invest in prosperity. Which means that we have to make massive investments in our road network, but not only that. We also have to offer alternatives to the car, even though we know that the number of cars will increase even more in the future. This is why so much work is going on in Flanders at the moment. We are investing in public
“INVESTMENT DEFICIT BUILT UP BETWEEN 1970 AND 2015: €80 BILLION.” transport, with new buses and trams, and in bicycle parks, but also in filling the missing links in our road network.’ So the Flemish authorities are aware of the importance of government investment. But the minister is also of the opinion that it is only possible because of the economies being made in other government departments. P 18 >
WALLONIA The same message was being put out on the other side of the language border. Government investment is crucial for Wallonia too. But Christophe Lacroix (Walloon Minister of Budgets) acknowledged that the present economic climate did not allow any extra investment. Christophe Lacroix: ‘Our government has resolved as far as possible to retain investment capacity in the various areas in which it is active, in spite of our commitment to achieving substantial savings. Despite the unfavourable economic conditions and the new European accounting and budgetary rules, we have succeeded in keeping government investment at a level comparable to that of the previous period of office.’ Among other things, the Walloon government has cooperated more closely with the private sector, just as the Flemish government did. But Europe takes a very critical view of public-private partnerships (PPP). This became apparent in connection with the trams in Liège, a story that will not be unfamiliar to Flemish ears either. In March, Eurostat ruled that this PPP had to be incorporated as into the regional budget in one go.
“WE HAVE TO INVEST IN PROSPERITY.”
Christophe Lacroix: ‘Regarding the trams in Liège, there were intensive discussions between my administration, the Walloon transport company,
Ben Weyts | Minister of Transport and Public Works
“THE MONEY RAISED WITH ROAD TOLLS SHOULD GO INTO
“THE WALLOON GOVERNMENT HAS COOPERATED MORE CLOSELY WITH THE PRIVATE SECTOR.
Mark Dillen | director-general of the Flemish Building Confederation
Christophe Lacroix | Walloon Minister of Budgets
the Institute for National Accounts and Eurostat. It was not only a question of transport. This project also requires major works, which create jobs. The government can carry out large-scale projects like this if it does not have to include them in its budget.’
TRUST Building is an important sector in our economy. What is more, there will be a substantial need for maintenance and new infrastructure in the near future. So the Confederation assumes that our various governments will figure out a solution to the problem of investment. For that matter, the Confederation has this year carried out an in-depth study of the situation and has devoted its annual report to the possibilities created by alternative forms of finance. As Colette Golinvaux (chair of the Building Confederation) said at the end of the seminar at MATEXPO, it continues to consider new forms of finance that are suited to supporting and restarting government investment. Colette Golinvaux: ‘Government investment is of inestimable importance to the building industry. Our authorities are more than willing to look for creative solutions so that our companies are fully able to take opportunities. Our society, in the broadest sense of the word, needs new homes, schools, hospitals, sports centres, cultural centres, rest and care homes, roads and so on. It is our duty to ourselves and the generations to come to keep on investing.’
ROBUST DISCUSSIONS Marc Dillen (director-general of the Flemish Building Confederation) confronted the ministers with the loss of jobs among road builders. Marc Dillen: ‘Thousands of jobs have been lost in the road-building sector. It is clear that the Flemish government wants to keep government investment at the required level. It is prepared to make cuts in other places to do so. But this shift will have to be relatively large. There are a number of other areas where an effort can be made. I am thinking, for example, of road tolls. The money raised should go into investment. Only then will we be able to keep employment at the necessary level.’
Francis Carnoy (director-general of the Walloon Building Confederation) asked Minister Lacroix exactly why it is that Wallonia engages in so little government investment. Francis Carnoy: ‘Our government expenditure is not especially low in relation to our GDP. In fact it’s the opposite. But our country does have a deficit when it comes to government investment, and the same applies to Wallonia. Isn’t it time to make choices and to decide what the government wants to spend money on? You might for example consider a shift from current expenditure to investments that will create greater prosperity in the future.’
,33%) 1%) 1%) 5%)
FACTS & FIGURES
) ,42%) 0,38%)
1,49% GREAT BRITAIN
2,29% ITALY 2,50% LUXEMBURG 6,11% GERMANY
VISITORS’ FIELDS OF INTEREST
BOUWMACHINES BUILDING RUWBOUW MACHINES
GOEDERENMATERIAL BEHANDELING HANDLING
VISITOR SCORES GENERAL IMPRESSION
NUMBER OF EXHIBITORS
BOUWMACHINES FINISH BUILDING VOLTOOIING MACHINES
BURGERLIJKE CIVIL BOUWKUNDE ENGINEERING
REINIGINGSCLEANING MACHINES MACHINES
EXHIBITOR SCORES GENERAL IMPRESSION
VISITOR PROFILES 40,3%
6,7% 0,7% AANKOOP / LOGISTIEK BUYERS / LOGISTICS / PRODUCTIE PRODUCTION
EINDGEBRUIKERS / MACHINIST USERS / DRIVERS
EVOLUTION IN NUMBER OF INDIVIDUAL VISITORS
NUMBER OF EXHIBITORS
36.231 35 30 25
exposerenvoor vooreen een exposeren
exposeren voor een AT MATEXPO 2017 WILL EXHIBIT volgende editie volgende editie volgende editie
WILL VISIT IN 2017
bezoek in2017 2017 bezoek in bezoek in 2017 3,6%
42,2% DEFINITELY NOT MATEXPOMAGAZINE
THIS WAS 2015
MATEXPO Café 2015
THIS WAS 2015
“A FEAST FOR THE SECTOR, WE JUST HAVE TO BE THERE” Stephan Vandebeeck | Euroquip
“FROM THE POINT OF VIEW OF A FUTURE CONSTRUCTION ENGINEER, MATEXPO IS IDEAL FOR EQUIPPING A SITE” Michel Brutin | student at KU Leuven
THIS WAS 2015
“HUGELY IMPRESSIVE” Nathalie Blondeel | Jan De Nul
“THE BEST FAIR FOR YEARS, WITH GOOD SALES RESULTS” Marcel Kerkhofs | Keestrack
THIS WAS 2015
“AN ESSENTIAL FAIR FOR KEEPING UP TO DATE ON TRENDS AND EQUIPMENT” RIS Industries
“A MAJOR TRADE FAIR WITH THE VERY LATEST MACHINES ON THE MARKET" Peter Sel | Bolckmans NV
THIS WAS 2015
“A FAIR THAT THE CONSTRUCTION PROFESSIONAL DEFINITELY SHOULD NOT MISS” Noel Neirynck | teacher at Syntra-West Kortrijk
“AN ENORMOUSLY VARIED FAIR WITH A RANGE FOR EVERYONE WHO HAS ANYTHING TO DO WITH THE BUILDING SECTOR" Rob Dingenen | VDAB
THIS WAS 2015
“ABSOLUTELY RECOMMENDED FOR THE PROFESSIONAL; THERE IS NO OTHER FAIR OF THIS SCALE AND QUALITY IN THE BENELUX” Michel Couderé, Christophe Coudére BVBA | Bruges
37th International trade fair for building machines
6 â†’ 10 SEPTEMBER | KORTRIJK XPO
6 10 SEPTEMBER 2017 | KORTRIJK XPO
d e r a prep
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Highlights of Matexpo 2015