Organized at INSA Blois on June 8 as part of the departmental exhibition “From the Revolution to the Glorious Thirties”, the round table on the future of industry highlighted the conditions for reindustrialisation. Innovative, low-carbon and rejuvenated, the industry has a future in Loir-et-Cher… as elsewhere.
By Jean-Luc Vezon
Sign of the interest of the subject at a time when industrial sovereignty appears in the programs of the candidates for the legislative elections, nearly 150 people had responded to the invitation of the CCI 41, the department, the agency of attractiveness BeLc, Dev’Up, UIMM and INSA. Among them, many young engineering students.
Former manager of a Vendôme company (ECOFIT Rosenbeg), the host of the evening, Jean-Baptiste Anginot, perfectly set the framework for the discussions of the round table. Citing the work of Nicolas Dufourq “the deindustrialization of France”, he clarified that “our country emptied nearly half of its factories and a third of its industrial employment between 1995 and 2015”.
Observation confirmed by Lionel Henry, director of the Observatory of the economy and the territories of Loir-et-Cher who recalled the decline of the industrial sector (16% of jobs in 2020, 28% in 1989) in Loir-et- Expensive, particularly as a result of relocation and automation. This development must nevertheless be corrected because many industrial companies have outsourced services and resorted to temporary work (1). These jobs are counted in the Merchant Services which, at the same time, went from 31 to 43% of jobs.
While the whole of French society has turned away from its industry, the situation has evolved under the effect of unemployment, dependency and, more recently, crises. To regain industrial sovereignty, the public authorities are making reindustrialization a priority. Three issues have now been identified: skills, innovation and transition.
In the presence of four business representatives, a round table enabled them to be better identified. Manager of Thiolat Packaging (Guillin group), a SME with 160 employees specializing in food packaging, Marie-Noëlle Amiot insisted on the need to welcome candidates and train them more quickly and efficiently. Its target, young people and women who represent only 30% of the workforce today. For the president of CCI 41, “The machines are now accessible to women. We need a change of mentality and more support from OPCOs to train”.
HRD of Dubuis (Stanley Black&Decker group) which manufactures power tools, Guillaume Jacob displays the group’s strategy of being carbon neutral in 2030, “ a condition with innovation to maintain activity in Blois”. The company also fully plays the apprenticeship card with more than 10% of work-study trainees training at the CFAI: “Training is unlimited, whatever the level”.
Show our know-how
Showing technological know-how and accelerating decarbonization is the will of Sylvain Garcia, the boss of Procter & Gamble, whose Blois factory with 120 employees manufactures shampoos. Within three years, the company “pilot world” at group level aims to be carbon neutral and to use recycled plastic for its 300 million bottles produced annually. Again, sustainability is at stake. “ Otherwise, it will be Romania or Poland” assures the leader who is working hard on the subject with Dev’Up.
With 1,000 jobs, including 500 in R&D, on its Blois site, the American group BorgWarner, which specializes in the manufacture of gasoline and diesel injectors, is faced with the imminent disappearance of internal combustion engines. To maintain leadership and retain jobs, the group is banking on the hydrogen internal combustion engine. “There is no single solution, hydrogen is a clean alternative to electric motors. With the support of our partners, we are developing this technology” assures Jean-Luc Beduneau, director of innovation of the company, specifying that we will soon see vehicles circulating in Blois and “ that he already has signed contracts”.
Beyond these testimonies, the question of skills remains very essential. With an unemployment rate of 5.8% (5.3% in Vendômois), Loir-et-Cher got into trouble even as retirements are accelerating: 3 to 4% of the workforce on average against 1 to 2% in 2015. To consider global and shared solutions, the CCI 41 and its partners are organizing on June 28 The Assizes of Employment.
(1) The employment agency sector works 45% for industry