Xunta and companies to finance EUR 200 million strategic plan for canning industry
The Galician Government and the canning association ANFACO-CECOPESCA (National Association of Canned Fish Producers) presented a strategic plan for the Galician canning industry that will serve as a guide until 2020 so that this sector consolidates its leadership.
The program foresees the allocation of nearly EUR 200 million, contributed equally by the Administration and companies, to finance investment in R&D&i and energy efficiency projects, as well as facilitating funding for companies in the sector.
During the presentation of the plan, at the headquarters of ANFACO-CECOPESCA, the President of Xunta de Galicia, Albert Nuñez Feijoo, explained that, as regards training, the strategy will promote training programs at the plants, define a professionalism certificate for the sector and promote access to qualifications for the canning firms. In addition, it will advocate for the creation of added value through quality and for continuing to promote internationalization.
This aims to achieve a double objective: to increase the weight of the canning industry and to consolidate the leadership of the Galician canning sector, which today represents almost 3 per cent of Galicia’s GDP.
Feijóo recalled that the Xunta has invested more than EUR 260 million since 2009 to develop 255 projects that improve the sea-industry chain; and will allocate some EUR 96 million between 2016 and 2020 to shore up the processing industry.
He also stressed that a proof of the importance of this Galician sector is the fact that 12,000 of the 15,000 direct jobs in the canning sector in Spain are in Galicia, and that 80 per cent of the Spanish canning exports are Galician.
With 2020 as a horizon, the strategic plan of the canning industry seeks to respond to some of the main challenges facing the sector, including access to raw materials due to growing difficulties in ensuring the supply of species such as tuna.
In addition, this plan seeks to design measures to strengthen and consolidate business structures, strengthen internationalization, consolidate brand reputation and address employment and training measures.
In order to boost the competitiveness of canning firms, the plan includes measures aimed at improving the companies’ financial situation and at easing their growth process. It also aims to strengthen the sector’s links with the foreign market.
According to Feijóo, this new strategy reflects the Galician canning tradition and entrepreneurship, and, above all, intends to preserve this tradition and complement it with entrepreneurship, strategy, technological advances and international ambition”.
On the other hand, representatives of workers’ commissions gathered in front of ANFACO-CECOPESCA headquarters, during the presentation of the strategic plan, to denounce that, the secretary general of the Federation of Industry of Galicia, Víctor Ledo, considers it was created “unilaterally.”
The union complains that it has not been included in the negotiating tables, despite its claims, and says that the plan will benefit only large companies, while the small ones will experience a “gradual closure,” La Opinión reported.