Make the green transition a European success story.

By Maros Sefcovic, European Commission Executive Vice-President for the European Green Deal for Interinstitutional Relations and Foresight.

Let me inform you about our Communication, taking stock of a series of nine clean transition dialogues we held between October and April.

European industry has a vital role to play in the green transition because the European Green Deal is – and remains – our growth strategy.

Moreover, the current geopolitical context has strengthened the case to maintain and boost Europe’s global position in strategic zero and low carbon energy technologies. 

I therefore want to begin by appreciating that industry and social partners are committed to our collective climate goals.

They are also committed to stay and prosper in Europe – and to keep engaging with shaping and implementing the European Green Deal.

I also appreciate their positive feedback on the Commission’s work to put in place a regulatory framework that brings stability and predictabillity. 

My main takeway is that Europe’s decarbonisation must be increasingly driven by market forces, in addition to targets and regulation. We need to keep strengthening the business case for the clean tech sector and for the decarbonisation of our energy intensive industry. 

This is particularly important as we are in the implementation phase of the Green Deal, which – from the industrial perspective – means the phase of scaling-up manufacturing capacities.

With this in mind, President von der Leyen launched last year a series of Clean Transition Dialogues to support key sectors in building their business model for decarbonisation.

The dialogues that I have chaired so far have been varied, addressing a wide range of industries. And this is how we need to keep working. Because no two industries face identical challenges. 

However, there are a few common themes that keep coming up. 

Our Communication today identifies five building blocks for a reinforced industrial approach to delivering the Green Deal.

These are requests that are shared by most, if not all, of our industries.


First, an effective and simplified regulatory framework:

Stakeholders are broadly happy with the rules we have put in palce, and they now know the direction that has been set. But they also seek our support to help them comply and deliver.

The Commission will further focus on burden reduction and its ongoing actions, such as reducing burden from reporting requirements by 25% without undermining its policy objectives


  • Second, stable energy prices:

We need to keep addressing uncompetitive energy costs, hampering investments in the clean tech sector and our energy intensive industries.

We have a good regulatory framework, such as the Electricity Market Design, the revised Renewable Energy Directive and the Net Zero Industry Directive, accompanied by the Wind Action Plan, Girds Action Plan and other tools.

However, we may need to debate additional targeted and temporary measures. This is a call that we have heard from industry, and which we are attentive to.

After all, our industry employs some 35 million people in Europe.


  • Third, modern infrastructure:

The underdeveloped energy infrastructure, especially at the distribution level, can create bottlenecks in the green transition and electrification of our economy.

We need to accelerate the roll out of energy and transport infrastructure.


  • Fourth, easier access to finance: 

The private sector will have a key role to playin deploying investment in the clean transition. But we must also provide greater public support to those clean tech sectors where market failures exist.

Some sectors are not yet commercially viable, and we need to stimulate investment and help to build future markets.

Like we are doing for example with the European Hydrogen Bank.

Achieving a deep and integrated Capital Markets Union is another urgent priority to inject new funds into Europe’s green economy.


Fifth, a stronger single market:

We must strengthen our actions towards creating a single market for clean tech in Europe and start rewarding companies investing in innovative and sustainable technologies as well as manufacturing with the lowest sustainability footprint. 

In practice, it includes boosting demand and off-take for these products to scale up manufacturing of clean products in Europe, improve the business case and consequently reduce the need for public support.

Lastly, our single market must be part ofa global level playing field for European businesses:We should address the increasingly distorted global trade.

We need to more efficiently and flexibly use our trade defence measures to address dumping of subsidised and unsustainably produced goods on the EU and global market.

And we also need to urgently address the global carbon pricing, which remains essential not only for achieving our climate ambitions but also for preventing carbon leakage.


To conclude, the Clean Transition Dialogues we have held so far have been a valuable and enriching exercise – and I am sure not only for me but for all sides.

This is the Commission’s contribution to the upcoming European Council.

But we will not stop here. A continuation of these Clean Transition Dialogues is part of our commitment to our stakeholders.

The Commission is therefore committed to working with Member States, the European Parliament, social partners, and other stakeholders to create a reinforced industrial approach in Europe and make the green transition a European success story.