The working session between the new Government of the Generalitat and the representatives of the Catalan cement industry, held on October 10, has highlighted the coincidence of approaches in strategic areas for the sector such as the promotion of public works and the impulse to the Circular Economy strategies. At the meeting with the Secretary General of the Vice Presidency, Economy and Finance, Albert Castellanos, and the President of, Joan Jaume, the delegation of Ciment Català, headed by its president Salvador Fernández Capo, called for the promotion of infrastructures that maintain the country’s competitiveness. He also requested the support of the Catalan administration for the use of alternative fuels in the factories as a formula to fight against the increase in the price of electricity, the use of waste and the saving of fossil fuels, which are much more polluting than alternative fuels.

In this regard, the Generalitat has reiterated its firm commitment to the Circular Economy and is determined to promote products and services that are more beneficial to the environment, for example by encouraging the use of local resources that limit CO2 emissions. However, legal restrictions on bids and contracts do not always facilitate this willingness and, in fact, often prevent progress in this line of work.

Ciment Català offered as an alternative to achieve these environmental objectives, asking the companies for quantified and contrasted information, such as the Environmental Product Declarations (DAP) or the Officially Recognized Quality Labels (DOR). He also proposed to the Generalitat to promote a safe energy recovery of waste, such as the cases of dry sewage sludge or CDR. The fact that it is a common practice in developed countries around us (Germany, Holland, Sweden …) offers security on its use both from an environmental and health point of view.

The meeting also analyzed the situation of the market, which has been greatly weakened by the unemployment experienced in the construction of infrastructures. According to the Government, the economic context of the Generalitat is gradually improving, and it is hoped that this will translate into investments, despite the unavoidable priorities of health or education. Its reflection in public works will begin soon, but will materialize with a certain slowness in bidding and, above all, in production. It is foreseen that 2019 will be a transition year in which this recovery of investment is probably not yet clearly evident in practice. Castellanos also stressed that, beyond the political circumstances, the day to day should be followed and meetings are planned with the State administration for economic and investment issues, such as compliance with the third additional provision of the Statute of Catalonia.