The Association of Public Services and Public Enterprises Austria (VÖWG) supports and advises its members from various spheres of activity at national and European level. The president of the VÖWG is the Executive City Councillor of Finance, Economic and International Affairs, Ms. Renate Brauner.
It is particularly important to have representation at EU level at a time when the institutions are broadening their range of activities and influence. This impacts on our members’ freedom to run their services of general interest. As a member of the European Centre of Employers and Enterprises providing Public services (CEEP), we closely monitor the legislative process in Austria and the EU. CEEP is one of the three General Cross Industry Social Partners recognised by the European Commission. The VÖWG regularly takes part in consultations with the Commission on their draft regulations, directives and other legislation of interest to our members. Furthemore, the VÖWG team are members of a number of committees, and therefore, are always up-to-date with developments at EU level. Taking an active role within the decision-making process in Europe, we are a strong voice against Brussels’ on-going attempts to liberalise public provision of services.
The VÖWG represents more than 100 companies that represent the whole spectrum of public-service providers. Our members guarantee the security of energy supplies, from highly efficient district heating and cooling to grid operations. The health sector and social services are also well represented. When it comes to mobility, public transport not only facilitates the movement of people but also contributes to a reduction in greenhouse-gas emissions in an affordable way. On top of that, our member associations provide Austrian citizens with high-quality water services, a universal product that is much more than a “commercial good” in the sense of the internal market doctrine. As they provide services of general interest, VÖWG members have a key function in helping the EU meet its ambitious environmental targets. The public sector plays an essential part in securing supply on the one hand, and advocates sustainable development on the other. This reflects its holistic approach, which covers the whole life cycle of services and goods.
The VÖWG acquires a huge amount of information and develops a precise information tool for our members. We are in constant contact with different stakeholders and defend the interest of our members at the right time in the right place.
Executive City Councillor of Finance, Economic and International Affairs, City of Vienna
Chief Executive Officer, Linz AG
Director and Board Member, Wien Holding GmbH
President, Austrian Federal Chamber of Labour
Heidrun MAIER-DE KRUIJFF