European policy-making is of great importance for municipal enterprises. For this reason, the VKU holds its own European Office in Brussels since 2002. The staff of the office is responsible for monitoring European developments and their significance for municipal enterprises, as well as proactively communicating their interests to the European institutions. The core topics of the VKU's European work concern the establishment of a European Energy Union, the European Green Deal, the path to a circular economy, the development of an economic and ecological drinking water supply and wastewater disposal system, the establishment of a Digital Single Market as well as the further development of the European Single Market, e.g. in the areas of taxes, data, subsidies or SMEs. The staff of the office maintain close contact with the European umbrella organisations and contribute the opinions and positions of the VKU and its members. Furthermore, the European Office sees itself as the first point of contact and point of contact for all VKU member companies in EU matters.
In order to strengthen its networking, the VKU is involved in the European umbrella organisations SGI Europe, CEDEC and MWE, which represent the interests of the municipal economy across EU member states in Brussels. SGI Europe represents the interests of service providers of general interest and is in close contact with the EU Commission as a social partner. In the energy sector, local distribution system operators from ten EU Member States find a common voice in the umbrella organisation CEDEC. Municipal waste management companies, responsible for waste disposal and urban cleaning, pool their interests in the umbrella association Municial Waste Europe - MWE.
There is a valuable exchange of experience among the members of the umbrella associations and European legislative processes are jointly considered and accompanied from the perspectives of the different EU states. By positioning itself as an umbrella organisation, the municipal sector is able to make its voice heard more strongly at the EU institutions and to participate in the legislative processes. The VKU is actively involved in the work of the umbrella organisation and is represented at the presidential level. To find out more about the work of our umbrella organisations, click on the following links:
- European Association of Employers and Enterprises providing Public Services (SGI Europe)
- European Federation of Local Energy Companies (CEDEC)
- Municipal Waste Europe (MWE)
"Facts and figures" provides a brief overview over our association, its member companies and their areas of activity. The flyer "What are local pulic utilities in Germany?" explains briefly the role, duties and vision of municipal undertakings in Germany.