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CAPEB and EBC meet the Director-General for Energy of the European Commission, together with other major construction stakeholders


04 Oct 2016


Innovation & Enterprise

Paris, 4 October 2016 – Ahead of the revision of the two directives on energy efficiency, postponed to the end of the year, the President of the French Confederation of Micro Construction Companies (CAPEB) and of the European Builders Confederation (EBC), Patrick Liébus, gathered the representatives of the construction industry to meet the Director-General for Energy of the European Commission, Dominique Ristori. The objective of this meeting is to exchange views on the energy efficiency of buildings to trigger growth and investment opportunities at the European level. The energy retrofitting market is a common challenge. This is an opportunity that Member States must seize to boost job creation and to achieve the objectives of the Paris Agreement on climate change.

To download the picture: click here. © CAPEB

Construction professionals ready to act to improve business and employment

The European Commission will present a revision of the two European directives on energy efficiency by the end of the year: the directive 2012/27 on energy efficiency and the directive 2010/31 on the energy performance of buildings.

Ahead of this revision and upon invitation by EBC, the key actors of the construction industry met today in Paris to express their need for national and European initiatives to facilitate the energy renovation of the existing building stock.

The European representatives of the construction sector met the Director General for Energy of the European Commission to explain the expectations and issues of the construction value chain regarding this large market.

Entrepreneurs, traders, manufacturers, all the stakeholders of the construction chain know that their sector is capable of matching the needs of the energy renovation market, as long as the European or national policies are clear, coherent and aiming for long-term. The industrial investments needed in this market are onerous and substantial. The stability of public policies related to energy-efficient building renovation is the best guarantee to ensure the confidence of businesses and households.

Patrick Liébus, President of EBC and CAPEB, underlined: “The companies of our sector are aware of global warming. They are ready to support all the policies leading to a reduction of the energy use of buildings through investments, training, research and innovation. However, the European Union and the Member States must set up the right conditions by establishing a stable and coherent legislative framework, while at the same time providing the correct financial incentives to achieve the commitments made at COP 21. The economic potential of the energy retrofitting of buildings is an opportunity to get  out of the economic crisis that has hit Europe and to attract young people to our sector! For each million Euros spent in energy retrofitting, 8.1 jobs are created in Europe. This is the positive message we would like to share.”

Dominique Ristori, Director General for Energy at the European Commission, declared: “Energy efficiency is not only about reducing energy consumption and emissions. It also concerns growth and job creation. In this sense, we need a contribution from all the key actors, starting by the construction industry and the housing professionals which provide a decisive input to the GDP and to employment.”

Jean-Louis Marchand, President of FIEC, declared: “FIEC is convinced that the most cost-effective solution for saving energy in buildings is taking action when a major renovation is undergoing. This requires, on the one hand, adequate financing mechanisms taking all constraints and objectives into consideration; on the other hand, we have to ensure that our enterprises and workers possess the necessary skills and qualifications.

Bernard Lekien, President of Eurogypsum, declared: “Eurogypsum is convinced that the ambition of the Paris Agreement will be met by the construction industry thanks to high-level energy performances. The European gypsum industry has developed innovative technological solutions, which not only are energy-saving, but also improve the quality, the aesthetics and the comfort of interior design. Our industry provides complete equipment solutions for walls, partitions, floors and ceilings for construction and renovation projects. To ensure an efficient use of these innovations, the gypsum industry trains more than 25000 installers every year in Europe, with the ultimate goal to contribute to the objectives of economic recovery and job creation.”

Benoit HENNAUT, Vice-President of Aliaxis for France, Belgium, the Netherlands and North Africa, declared: “The energy-efficient building renovation is a major opportunity for the European economy, as long as we, as companies, are able to implement innovation, training and communication programmes adapted to the future directives. The energy-efficient renovation of the existing buildings offers benefits in terms of money savings and comfort to the citizens. The industry of PVC pipes is already on the path to contribute to this goal.”

Jørgen Tang-Jensen, CEO of VELUX group, declared: “In Europe, we need to encourage the renovation of our existing buildings to improve the quality of our housing stock, to cut energy costs and to create growth. Our Healthy Homes Barometer 2016 shows that energy savings (75%) and increased comfort/wellbeing (73%) are running neck and neck as drivers for renovation. That’s why we believe comfort parameters, such as requirements about daylight and indoor climate, should be strengthened in the upcoming revision of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive (EPBD), as well as in national legislation and subsidy schemes related to renovation works in France and other Member States.”

Barry LYNHAM – Director for Strategy and Communications - Knauf Insulation, declared: “The thermal renovation of the European building stock down to near zero energy levels by 2050 is an opportunity to create a huge wave of investment into the European economy. An investment that would create local construction jobs whilst helping to put Europe on course to meet its climate objectives. What we need now is a strong signal from the European Commission that this is the direction that they want Europe to go and there is no better place to give this signal than in the upcoming revision of the Energy Performance of Buildings Directive.

Key figures - Europe

for the construction sector

-       Sector with the highest economic contribution to the EU GDP: 9%

-       More than 3 million enterprises, of which 97% have less than 20 workers

-       18 million direct employees of which 83% are employed in SMEs

for the renovation market

-       Represented 57% of the turnover of the sector in 2015

-       €109 billion = the turnover of the energy retrofitting in 2015

-       Labour-intensive activity; assessment: for each million Euros invested in energy retrofitting, 8.1 jobs are created

*EBC figures

Key figures - France

For the construction sector

-       9.8% of the added value in the market sectors in 2015

-       559 224 enterprises, among which 98% have less than 20 workers

-       1.4 million employees, of which 54% are employed in companies with less than 20 workers

For the renovation market

-       Represented 58% of the turnover of the sector in 2015

-       Works with a potential thermal impact (roofs, façades, apertures, arrangements and heating) represent €16 621 million spent

*CAPEB figures

About CAPEB:

CAPEB (Confédération de l’Artisanat et des Petites Entreprises du Bâtiment) is the employer’s organization representing the craftsmen of the construction sector in France, consisting of:

- 350 784 enterprises with less than 20 workers, that is 98% of the construction sector companies

- 685 396 employees, that is 60% of the construction sector employees

- 63 000 apprentices, that is 79% of the construction sector apprentices

Representing also: 

- A turnover of 74 billion Euros, which is 64% of the construction sector turnover

CAPEB is also on Twitter:

Contacts for the press

Hopscotch: Baptiste Romeuf – Phone: +33 (0) 1 58 65 00 45 –

CAPEB: Isabelle Planchais – Phone: +33 (0) 1 53 60 50 00/77/81 and +33 (0) 6 08 56 78 06 -


About EBC:

Established in 1990, the European Builders Confederation - EBC - is a European professional organisation representing associations of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises working in the construction sector. EBC is a member of UEAPME (the European association of micro-enterprises and SMEs), on behalf of which it chairs the UEAPME Construction Forum.

The construction sector is of vital importance to the European economy. With 3 million enterprises, an annual turnover of around € 1600 billion and a total direct workforce of 18 million, the construction sector contributes at around 9% to the GDP of the European Union.

99.9% of the European construction sector is composed of SMEs, which produce 80% of the construction industry's output. Small enterprises (less than 50 employees) are responsible for 60% of the production and employ 70% of the sector's working population.

Contacts for the press

Riccardo Viaggi, EBC Secretary General: ; Mob: +32 (0)495 123 577

Valeria Mazzagatti, Communication officer: ; +32(0)251423 23