European Federation of Foundation Contractors

Berlin Hauptbahnhof, Germany, Bauer JV Lehrter

Final Statement from Hans-Joachim Bliss as President of the EFFC

Dear Members, Dear Stakeholders
Ladies and Gentlemen, Colleagues
Dear friends of EFFC

In just a few days we will be holding our Annual General Meeting (AGM) in Madrid. This is the event where all Member Federations can meet to close out the year and to take essential decisions for and on behalf of the Federation at the Council Meeting.

It’s the time when major joint decisions are taken to align the pathway for the future development of the Federation. It’s a joint responsibility, that requires an adequate presence of Members. In recent years we always achieved over 75% attendance, which is good and shows the level of commitment and responsibility we have within our Industry.

However, it is not only the time to make decisions as I have described above, but also the time, as my two year’s tenure is over to handover the Presidency to the next Officer, as this is a rolling procedure in accordance with the Statues of the Federation.

I thought it was appropriate to look back over my presidency, reflect and recap on some of the highlights of the period.

It was back in October 2015 in Berlin that I took over the Presidency of EFFC on behalf of the German Federation BFA – a great privilege and an honor for me to do so. Being in the Special Foundation Industry some 37 years, all of my professional life, and being the President of our Industry in Europe just few years prior to my retirement, fills me with great appreciation and pride.

I have always tried to follow and continue the great initiatives that the many of my predecessors have initiated. The work of our 3 Working Groups – Technical, Contracts and Health &Safety – is the fundament of achieving our mission to improve standards and ways of working in our Industry.

It is also fitting that I thank all the volunteers who were prepared to provide their time, their energy – and all at no cost – to the EFFC too, for without their input so little would have been achieved. My special thanks go to the Chairs’ of the Working Groups; it is a challenging job, and those of you who have led a working group in a federation will know what I am talking about.

We have created a new website, which has contributed to better networking between Members and our Stakeholders. The multiple increase in the click rates and engagement with the website confirmed that we did the right thing. I do thank all, who have volunteered to publish articles, to tell us all about the EU, and to tell us about interesting projects. I especially thank the Working Groups as well who published valuable documents and instruments for the Members, to help doing the work more successful, safer and professional.

Four editions of a newly introduced Newsletter have been successfully launched, with great professional assistance.

We continued to develop the Carbon Calculator – a tool to calculate the Carbon Footprint (CO2 emission) of Special Foundation products to the Client’s Buildings. A new design and new logo has been created and published with the latest version of the calculation tool on our website too.
We have raised our voice in the European Construction Industry as well and now have a greater and higher profile than ever before. Fair distribution of risks during the execution of contracts is still our prime objective.
Getting an increased recognition for our Industry in the European Commission remains something that we would like to see improve.

Future efforts shall be directed at attracting Young Professionals into our Industry. A special corner in the website is created to provide them with a platform to network and to become part of the Federation.

Last but not least, I thank all Members and Colleagues – but in particular the Secretary and his Team – who dedicated their efforts to the implementation of our Mission.

I did not achieve all I planned and I sincerely regret that I could not welcome any New Members into our Federation – although I tried.

Now it seems that it is time to hand over to Jose Candela, representing the Spanish Federation AETESS. I am sure he will continue taking on the responsibility of the President with the dedication an enthusiasm like we have all done in the past.

Good Luck Jose.

Hans-Joachim Bliss
(on behalf of the German National Federation BFA)

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