INDTech 2024 and the SET Plan IWG-Ind 2024 Annual Event

INDTech 2024 and the SET Plan IWG-Ind 2024 Annual Event


The INDTech Conference

Science and Innovation to Empower EU Industrial Resilience and Economic Security


The INDTech 2024 was organised by the European Commission and the Belgian Presidency of the Council of the European Union 2024, in Namur, Belgium from 3 to 5 June 2024.


INDTech 2024 was a comprehensive event, encompassing relevant aspects of integrating research and development into industrial initiatives, ensuring a “made in Europe” future for our industry. It has been three days full of knowledgeable discussions and panels, as well as in-depth presentations of the research and innovation landscape, forecasting the future of industry in Europe and globally. The sessions were filled with broad-ranging presentations and insights.


The exhibition spaces in the “Bourse” and “Halle Al Chair” venues hosted interesting and interactive booths from organisations, partnerships and projects. The A.SPIRE booth showcased the Processes4Planet partnership and the association’s achievements. The four European funded projects in which A.SPIRE is currently a consortium partner: SPIRE-SAIS, SET-IndEU, LEADS and 2DPLOY were also presented.


On 3 June 2024, the conference was opened by Willy Borsus, Vice-President of Wallonia and Minister for the Economy, Foreign Trade, Research and Innovation, Digital and Iliana Ivanova, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth. The rest of the day was divided into multiple sessions addressing the role of research and innovation activities in deploying advanced materials for reaching industrial leadership and trending issues like the speed, challenges and opportunities of Artificial Intelligence, as well as further discussion on advanced materials and the SME landscape.


The Processes4Planet session - Transformation of European Energy Intensive Industries on the Way to Climate Neutrality


The second day of the conference was dedicated to the European partnerships, focusing possible synergies between them, enhancing their potential impact on the green transition and competitiveness of the industries.


The Processes4Planet session - Transformation of European Energy Intensive Industries on the Way to Climate Neutrality - was moderated by the Executive Director of A.SPIRE, Angels Orduña and brought together Carla Benauges (Policy officer, DG CLIMA, European Commission), Jean-Yves Tilquin (R&D Director at Carmeuse), Anna Domènech (Innovation Manager at Barna Steel, CELSA group), Christian Leroy (Director Innovation at European Aluminium), Paola Mazzuchelli (F&T Unit, CIRCE) and Garbiñe Guiu Etxeberria (Senior expert Industrial Transformation, DG RTD, European Commission).



The session discussed energy efficiency, emissions, competitiveness and climate mitigation in the frame of three Processes4Planet projects: eLITHE, FLEX4FACT and H2GLASS

The other sessions focused on microelectronics, nuclear technologies, clean hydrogen, AI technologies and cybersecurity, carbon neutral steel, raw materials, innovation in manufacturing technologies and materials independence.

In a very appropriate fashion, the second day’s social and cultural evening activity took place at the Pavillon du Numérique on the Citadelle of Namur, a futuristic-looking centre awarded with a special distinction for its architecture, sustainability, and energy at Milan World Expo 2015.



The last day of the flagship event of the European Commission was future-focused, discussing the next steps and the policy support needed to create more value for research and “make sure that the future of our industry is made in Europe.”


The SET Plan IWG-Ind 2024 Annual Event


Within the SET Plan framework and under the scope of the Belgian Presidency Semester, the Implementation Working Group on Sustainable and Efficient Energy Use in Industry (IWG-Ind) held its 2024 Annual Event: Advancing Sustainable Energy in Industry.


The event was organised by the SET-IndEU Secretariat as a satellite event of INDTech 2024. It featured two interactive panels discussing EU and national projects that have the potential to significantly impact the decarbonisation of the process industries, particularly in the fields of renewables and heat recovery. The topics addressed were energy efficiency, heat as a vector of energy in the future and electrification. Among the projects discussed were the P4Planet projects FIREFLY, eLITHE, REDOL,PLASTICE and the SPIRE project ETEKINA.


A.SPIRE’s Vice-Chair for Climate-Neutrality and IWG-Ind Co-Chair, Franz Hörzenberger (from ArcelorMittal) discussed FOAKs (First-Of-A-Kind plants) and their capacity to demonstrate impact, potential deployment of technologies and how the deployment is supported by innovation, in the context of the Processes4Planet Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda.


The event was moderated by Eric Lecomte (DG Energy) and Garbiñe Guiu Etxeberria from the European Commission.


The wrap-up notes from Eric Lecomte were an encouragement to decarbonise the European industries while maintaining their competitiveness so that Europe will remain “a shining example that the rest of the world would like to follow.’’

The European dream will continue to thrive with daring and forward-looking innovation.