Representativeness of the European social partner organisations: Steel industry

  • National Contribution:

  • Observatory: EurWORK
  • Topic:
  • Relaciones laborales,
  • Representativeness,
  • Date of Publication: 22 Septiembre 2009


This report sets out to provide the necessary information for evaluating sectoral social dialogue in the steel industry. The report first outlines the industry’s economic background and then examines the social partner organisations in all of the EU Member States (with the exception of Ireland), exploring membership levels, collective bargaining and public policy, and national and European affiliations. Finally,the report analyses the relevant European organisations, focusing in particular on membership composition and their capacity to negotiate. The aim of the EIRO representativeness studies is to identify the relevant national and supranational social partner organisations in the field of industrial relations in selected sectors. The impetus for these studies arises from the goal of the European Commission to recognise the representative social partner organisations to be consulted under the EC Treaty provisions. Hence, this study is designed to provide the basic information required to establish and evaluate sectoral social dialogue.

The study was compiled on the basis of individual national reports submitted by the EIRO correspondents. The text of each of these national reports is available below. The national reports were drawn up in response to a questionnaire and should be read in conjunction with it.

Download the full report (376KB PDF)

National contributions may be available

Objectives of study

The goal of this representativeness study is to identify the relevant national and supranational associational actors – that is, the trade unions and employer organisations – in the field of industrial relations in the steel industry, and to show how these actors relate to the industry’s European interest associations of labour and business. The impetus of this study and similar studies in other sectors arises from the aim of the European Commission to identify the representative social partner organisations to be consulted under the EC Treaty provisions. Hence, this study seeks to provide basic information needed to set up sectoral social dialogue. The effectiveness of the European social dialogue depends on whether its participants are sufficiently representative in terms of the sector’s relevant national industrial relations actors across the EU Member States. Therefore, only European organisations that meet this precondition of representativeness will be admitted to the European social dialogue.

Against this background, the study will first identify the relevant national social partner organisations in the steel industry, subsequently analysing the structure of the industry’s relevant European organisations, in particular their membership composition. This requires that the unit of analysis be clarified at both the national and European level of interest representation. The study includes only organisations whose membership domain is ‘sector related’ (see below). At both national and European levels, a multiplicity of associations exists, which are not considered as social partner organisations as they do not essentially deal with industrial relations. This creates a need for clear-cut criteria that will enable analysis to distinguish the social partner organisations from other associations.

As regards the national-level associations, classification as a sector-related social partner organisation implies fulfilling one of two definitional criteria: the associations must be either a party to ‘sector-related’ collective bargaining or a member of a ‘sector-related’ European association of business or labour that is on the Commission’s list of European social partner organisations consulted under Article 138 of the EC Treaty, and/or that participates in the sector-related European social dialogue; the association may also have requested to be included on the Commission’s list to be consulted under Article 138. Taking affiliation to a European association as a sufficient criterion for regarding a national organisation as a relevant actor implies that such an organisation may not be involved in industrial relations in its own country. Hence, this selection criterion may look odd at first glance. However, if a national organisation is a member of a European association, it may become involved in industrial relations matters through its membership of this association. Aside from this, it is important to know whether the national affiliates to the European associations are engaged in industrial relations in their respective country. Affiliation to a European social partner organisation and/or involvement in national collective bargaining are of utmost importance to the European social dialogue, since these are the two constituent mechanisms that can systematically connect the national and European level. As far as the selection criteria for the European organisations are concerned, any other sector-related European association that has sector-related national actors of relevance (as defined above) under its umbrella are considered; this is in addition to the European organisations in the above narrow sense. Hence, the aim of identifying the relevant sector-related national and European social partner organisations involves both a ‘top-down’ and ‘bottom-up’ approach.


For the purpose of this study, the steel industry is defined in terms of the Statistical Classification of Economic Activities in the European Community (Nomenclature statistique des activités économiques dans la Communauté européenne, NACE) (revision 1.1), to ensure the cross-national comparability of the findings. More specifically, steel manufacturing is defined as embracing NACE 27.1 (manufacture of basic iron, steel and ferro-alloys), 27.2 (manufacture of tubes), and 27.3 (other first processing of iron and steel). These categories all fall under the broader metal and machinery sector.

The domains of the trade unions and employer organisations, and scope of the relevant collective agreements, are likely to vary from this precise NACE demarcation. The study therefore includes all trade unions, employer organisations and multi-employer collective agreements that are ‘sector related’ in terms of the following four aspects or patterns:

  • congruence – the domain of the organisation or scope of the collective agreement must be identical to the NACE demarcation, as specified above;
  • sectionalism – the domain or scope covers only a certain part of the sector, as defined by the aforementioned NACE demarcation, while no group outside the sector is covered;
  • overlap – the domain or scope covers the entire sector, along with parts of one or more other sectors; however, it is important to note that the study does not include general associations that do not deal with sector-specific matters;
  • sectional overlap – the domain or scope covers part of the sector as well as parts of one or more other sectors.

At European level, the European Commission established a European Social Dialogue Committee for the steel industry in 2006. The European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC), set up in 1951 and dissolved in 2002, can be seen as the predecessor of the European social dialogue for the steel industry, since it was an important milestone in the development of European social partnership (see EU0606059I). Hence, the steel industry helped to pioneer social dialogue in Europe. The European Metalworkers’ Federation (EMF) on the employee side and the European Confederation of Iron and Steel Industries (Eurofer) on the employer side participate in European social dialogue for the steel industry. These two European organisations are the reference associations for analysing the European level, and affiliation to either of these European organisations is a sufficient criterion for classifying a national association as a relevant social partner organisation. However, it should be noted that the constituent criterion is one of sector-related membership. This is particularly important in the case of EMF due to its multi-sectoral domain. Thus, this study will include only those organisations affiliated to EMF whose domain relates to the steel industry.

Collection of data

The collection of quantitative data, such as those on membership, is essential for investigating the representativeness of the social partner organisations. Unless cited otherwise, this study draws from the country studies provided by the EIRO national centres. It is often difficult to find precise quantitative data. In such cases, rough estimates are provided rather than leaving a question blank, given the practical and political relevance of this study. However, if there is any doubt over the reliability of an estimate, this will be noted.

In principle, quantitative data may stem from three sources:

  • official statistics and representative survey studies;
  • administrative data, such as data on membership figures provided by the respective organisations; these are then used for calculating the density rate on the basis of available statistical figures on the potential membership of the organisation;
  • personal estimates made by representatives of the respective organisations.

While the data sources of the economic figures cited in the report are generally statistics, the figures on the organisations are usually either administrative data or estimates. Furthermore, it should be noted that some country studies also present data on trade unions and business associations that do not meet the above definition of a sector-related social partner organisation, in order to give a complete picture of the sector’s associational ‘landscape’. For the above substantive reasons, as well as for methodological reasons of cross-national comparability, such trade unions and business associations will not be considered in this report.

Structure of report

The report consists of three main parts, beginning with a brief summary of the steel industry’s economic background. The report then analyses the relevant social partner organisations in all the EU Member States, with the exception of Ireland, which is excluded from consideration as no business activities are reported within the area of the steel industry as demarcated above. The study therefore covers 26 European countries in total. The third part of the analysis considers the representative associations at European level. Each section will contain a brief introduction explaining the concept of representativeness in greater detail, followed by the study findings. As representativeness is a complex issue, it requires separate consideration at national and European level for two reasons. Firstly, the method applied by national regulations and practices to capture representativeness has to be taken into account. Secondly, the national and European organisations differ in their tasks and scope of activities. The concept of representativeness must therefore be suited to this difference.

Finally, it is important to note the difference between the research and political aspects of this study. While providing data on the representativeness of the organisations under consideration, the report does not reach any definite conclusion on whether the representativeness of the European social partner organisations and their national affiliates is sufficient for admission to the European social dialogue. The reason for this is that defining criteria for adequate representativeness is a matter for political decision rather than an issue of research analysis.

Economic background

From its beginnings in the middle of the 19th century, the iron and steel industry developed into a prime driver of industrialisation. This originated from its function as a producer of important intermediate products for many other industries – a factor which still gives the industry a key role in the economy of several countries. The economic characteristics of steel manufacturing include high capital requirements, a strong vertical integration of the distinct production steps, and the importance of economies of scale for efficiency. Historically, this also paved the way for backward integration into mining and other raw materials industries. This dependence on natural resources explains why the steel industry is still spread rather unevenly across the regions of Europe. However, modern transport systems have since altered this dependence. The characteristics of steel production have also resulted in a high and continued process of economic concentration in the industry. The properties of the workforce mirror the archetype of industrial manufacturing: the steel industry is predominantly comprised of blue-collar male workers; this is mainly due to the heavy nature of the production work (see TN0412101S).

In recent decades, the European steel industry has undergone considerable restructuring, caused by privatisation, internationalisation, continued concentration and technological changes. This process has led to considerable job losses in the industry. Tables 1 and 2 give an overview of the industry’s development from the mid-1990s to the mid-2000s, presenting a number of indicators that are significant to industrial relations and social dialogue. The figures confirm the aforementioned trends and characteristics. In general, employment has declined – albeit with notable differences in the pace of decline across countries. Whereas employment in the industry remained almost stable in Finland and even increased in Latvia, it dropped by more than two thirds in Poland. Available data suggest that the employment composition by gender usually changed to the disadvantage of women. In the period 1995–2007, an example of this change can be seen in Poland, where women’s share of total employment in the industry fell from about 23% to approximately 16%. France is the only country that saw a substantial growth in female employment: in 2006, the level of female employment in the industry stood at around 24% in France, compared with less than 5% in Spain and 17% in Denmark and Sweden. Table 2 also underlines the considerable differences in the relative weight of the industry across countries. In 2006, sectoral employment as a percentage of total employment ranged from approximately 1% in countries such as Malta and Slovakia to 0.06% or lower in countries such as Cyprus, Estonia and Portugal.

Table 1: Total employment in steel industry, 1995 and 2006
  Number of employers Total employment Male employment Female employment
1995 2006 1995 2006 1995 2006 1995 2006
AT n.a. 50a n.a. 20,638 n.a. 18,503 n.a. 1,719
BE n.a. 15 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
BG n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
CY 1 1c 45 23c 37 18c 8 5c
CZ 139k 259k 87,300k 50,100k 66,300k 41,300k 21,000k 8,800k
DE n.a. 1,673c n.a. 139,000 n.a. 122,000 n.a. 10,000
DK n.a. 83 5,360 2,723 4,572 2,274 788 449
EE n.a. 3 n.a. 140d n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
EL n.a. 162 n.a. 9,016 n.a. 8,119 n.a. 1,059
ES 426 517 38,026 37,528 n.a. 26,140 n.a. 1,290
FI 56a 68a 9,357 9,326 7,770 7,825 1,587 1,501
FR 83 86 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
HUe n.a. 46 n.a. 8,671 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
IT n.a. 1,356a n.a. 76,588f n.a. 70,896f n.a. 5,692f
LT n.a. 37g,h n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
LU 9 4g n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
LV 3g 11a 5,349g 8,766 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
MT n.a. ≤10g n.a. 1,910g n.a. 1,890g n.a. 20g
NL n.a. 90a n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
PL 24 30g 93,217 24,284g 71,991 24,284g 21,226 4,755g
PT n.a. n.a. 5,260l 2,866f 4,739l 2,336f 521l 530f
RO n.a. 127a n.a. 43,134 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
SE 171 145 28,554 24,368 24,295 20,346 4,259 4,022
SI n.a. 22 5,898 3,360 4,913 2,853 985 507
SK 18b 122 22,215b 21,183 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
UK n.a. 287i,j n.a. 67,506i n.a. 60,594i n.a. 6,912i

Note: a companies; b 1996; c 2005; d NACE 27.2-27.4; e companies with at least 5 employees; f 2001; g 2007; h basic metals; i 2008; j companies with at least 2 employees; k NACE 27; l 1991

n.a. = not available

Source: EIRO national centres, 2008

Table 2: Total employees in steel industry, 1995 and 2006
  Total employees Male employees Female employees Total sectoral employment as % of total employment in economy Total sectoral employees as % of total employees in economy
1995 2006 1995 2006 1995 2006 1995 2006 1995 2006
AT n.a. 20,627 n.a. 18,496 n.a. 1,712 n.a. 0.50 n.a. 0.61
BE 23,268a 18,287 n.a. 17,194 n.a. 1,093 n.a. 0.50 n.a. 0.6
BG 19,077 11,917 13,362 8,917 3,715 3,000 n.a. n.a. 1.0 0.52
CY n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. 0.02 0.01b n.a. n.a.
CZ 87,100g 49,300g 66,200g 40,500g 20,900g 8,800g 1.76g 1.04g 2.04g 1.22g
DE n.a. 158,570 n.a. 140,721 n.a. 17,849 n.a. 0.4 n.a. 0.6
DK 5,341 2,700 4,556 2,251 785 449 0.2 0.1 0.3 0.1
EE n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. 0.02 n.a. n.a.
EL n.a. 8,891 n.a. 7,832 n.a. 1,059 n.a. 0.2 n.a. 0.3
ES 22,400 26,180 n.a. 24,930 n.a. 1,250 0.27 0.19 n.a. n.a.
FI 9,353 9,309 7,766 7,810 1,587 1,499 0.5 0.6 0.4 0.5
FR 68,137 61,995 60,453 47,359 7,684 14,636 n.a. n.a. 0.34 0.23
HUc n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. 0.3 n.a. n.a.
IT n.a. 74,538d n.a. 69,246d n.a. 5,292d n.a. 0.33 n.a. 0.45
LT n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
LU 7,131 4,770 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. 3.61 1.5
LV 5,217e 8,706 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. 0.69e 0.91 0.68e 0.9
MT n.a. 1,900e n.a. 1,880e n.a. 20e n.a. 1.2 n.a. 1.4
NL n.a. 12,700 n.a. 11,800 n.a. 900 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
PL 93,185 29,013e 71,960 24,266e 21,225 4,747e 0.6 0.2e 0.9 0.3e
PT 5,033h 2,713d 4,531h 2,220d 502h 493d 0.13h 0.06d 0.16h 0.07d
RO n.a. 43,107 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. 0.5 n.a. 0.9
SE 28,554 24,368 24,295 20,346 4,259 4,022 0.74 0.56 0.74 0.56
SI n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. 0.80 0.42 0.8 0.42
SK 22,132a 20,900 17,998a 17,058 4,134a 3,842 1.05a 0.96 1.12a 1.0
UK n.a. 64,645f n.a. 57,733f n.a. 6,912f n.a. 0.23f n.a. 0.26f

Note: a 1996; b 2005; c companies with at least 5 employees; d 2001; e 2007; f 2008; g NACE 27; h 1991

n.a. = not available

Source: EIRO national centres, 2008

National level of interest representation

In many of the EU Member States, statutory regulations explicitly refer to the concept of representativeness when allotting certain rights of interest representation and public governance to trade unions and/or employer organisations. The most important rights addressed by such regulations include the formal recognition as a party to collective bargaining, the extension of the scope of a multi-employer collective agreement to employers not affiliated to the signatory employer organisation, and participation in public policy and tripartite bodies of social dialogue. Under these circumstances, representativeness is normally captured as the organisations’ membership strength. For instance, statutory extension provisions usually allow for extending a collective agreement to unaffiliated employers only when the signatory trade union and employer organisation represent – in other words organise – 50% or more of the employees within the agreement’s domain (see Institut des Sciences du Travail (IST), 2001).

As outlined above, the representativeness of the national social partner organisations is of interest here in terms of the capacity of their European umbrella organisations for participation in the European social dialogue. Hence, the role of the national actors in collective bargaining and public policymaking constitutes another important component of representativeness. The effectiveness of the European social dialogue tends to increase with the growing ability of the national affiliates of the European organisations to regulate the employment terms and to influence national public policies affecting the sector. As cross-national comparative analysis shows, there is generally a positive correlation between the bargaining role of the social partners and their involvement in public policy (see Traxler, 2004). Social partner organisations that are engaged in multi-employer bargaining are incorporated in state policies to a significantly greater extent than their counterparts in countries where multi-employer bargaining is lacking. The explanation for this is that only multi-employer agreements matter in macroeconomic terms, in terms of setting an incentive for governments to persistently seek cooperation with the social partner organisations. If single-employer bargaining prevails in a country, none of the collective agreements will have a noticeable effect on the economy due to their limited scope. As a consequence, the basis for generalised tripartite policy concertation will be absent.

The upshot of these considerations is that representativeness is a multi-dimensional concept that embraces three basic elements:

  • the membership domain and strength of the social partner organisations;
  • their role in collective bargaining;
  • their role in public policymaking.

Membership domains and strength

The membership domain of an organisation, as formally established by its constitution or name, distinguishes its potential members from other groups that the organisation does not claim to represent. As already explained, this report considers only organisations whose domain relates to the steel industry. However, there is insufficient room in this report to delineate the domain demarcations of all of the organisations in detail. Instead, the report notes how they relate to the sector by classifying them according to the four patterns of ‘sector relatedness’, as specified earlier. As regards membership strength, a differentiation exists between strength in terms of the absolute number of members and strength in relative terms. The research usually refers to relative membership strength as the density – that is, the ratio of actual to potential members.

Furthermore, a difference also arises between trade unions and employer organisations in relation to measuring membership strength. Trade union membership simply means the number of unionised persons. In addition to taking the total membership of a trade union as an indicator of its strength, it is also reasonable to break down this membership total according to gender. However, measuring the membership strength of employer organisations is more complex since they organise collective entities, namely companies that employ employees. In this case, two possible measures of membership strength may be used – one referring to the companies themselves, and the other to the employees working in the member companies of an employer organisation.

For a sectoral study such as this, measures of membership strength of both the trade unions and employer organisations also have to consider how the membership domains relate to the sector. If a domain is not congruent with the sector demarcation, the organisation’s total density (the density referring to its overall domain) may differ from its sector-specific density (the organisation’s density referring to the sector). As a result, three measures of density should be distinguished. Firstly, domain density refers to the ratio of the total membership to potential membership, as demarcated by the membership domain. Secondly, sector density measures sectoral membership relative to the total number of employees or companies in the sector. Thirdly, sectoral domain density captures sectoral membership in relation to potential membership within the sector, as demarcated by the domain. The second measure of density differs from the third if the domain of an organisation includes only a certain part of the sector in question. This report will first present the data on the domains and membership strength of the trade unions and will then consider those of the employer organisations.

Trade unions

Table 3 presents the data on the trade unions’ domains and membership strength. The table lists all of the trade unions meeting at least one of the two criteria for classification of a sector-related social partner organisation, as defined earlier. Of the 86 trade unions listed in Table 3, overlapping domains account for 50 of the unions, while sectionalist overlaps pertain to 34 of the unions and sectionalism to two of those listed. There is no trade union with a domain congruent with the sector definition. This underlines the fact that statistical definitions of business activities differ somewhat from the lines along which employees identify common interests and group together in trade unions.

The standard case of an overlapping domain is represented by an industrial trade union that embraces the steel industry in the broad sense. Sectionalist overlaps emanate from specialisation in certain employee groups of cross-sectoral incidence, which are then usually organised by the respective trade unions also across sectors. Typical examples of sectionalist overlaps are trade unions that specifically represent white-collar employees or blue-collar employees. Sectionalist overlaps based on specialisation in certain occupations – such as those of engineers – are rather rare and can be found only in the Nordic countries. In comparison to many other sectors, the trade union systems are highly concentrated in the steel industry. In 10 of the 26 countries under consideration, there are no more than two sector-related trade unions. As a result of this high degree of concentration, the trade unions cooperate rather than compete in countries where a multi-union system exists. In matters of collective bargaining and participation in public policy, rivalries are reported in Hungary, Poland, Portugal, Romania and Spain.

Table 3: Interest representation of trade unions in steel industry, 2006–2007
Country Type of membershipa Domain coverage Membership Density (%) Collective bargaining Con-sultation National and European affiliationsc
Members Members in sector Female member-ship (% of total member-ship) b Dom-ain Sector (sectoral domain)
GMTN Vol. SO 220,000d 11,000 14.5%d n.a. 55% (75%) Yes Yes ÖGB, EFFAT, EMCEF, EMF, ETUF: TCL
GPA-DJP Vol. SO 249,500d n.a. 43.2%d 20% n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes ÖGB, UNI-Europa, EFFAT, EMCEF, EPSU, Euro-cadres,
ABVV-Metaal Vol. SO 90,000 2,500 n.a. n.a. 17% (17%) Yes Yes ABVV- FGTB, EMF
MWB-FGTB Vol. SO n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes ABVV- FGTB, EMF
ACV/ CSC-Metaal Vol. SO 190,000 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes ACV- CSC, EMF
SETCa-BBTK Vol. SO 360,000 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes ABVV- FGTB, EMF
LBC-NVK Vol. SO 300,000 1,300 59% n.a. 7.5% (7.5%) Yes Yes ACV-CSC, EMF
CNE-GNC Vol. SO 150,000 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes ACV- CSC, EMF
ACLVB- CGSLB Vol. O 220,000 600 n.a. n.a. 7.5% (7.5%) Yes Yes EMF
Metalizy Vol. O 7,387 4,092 80% n.a. 34.3% (34.3%) Yes No CITUB, EMF
Metallurgy Vol. O 3,516 2,751 30% n.a. 23.1% (23.1%) Yes No CL Pod-krepa, EMF
TUFOEMI Vol. O 2,169 50 15% n.a. 0.4% (57.8%) Yes No CITUB, EMF
OBIEK Vol. O 8,875 n.a. 30% n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes No SEK, EMF
SEMMHK Vol. O 3,665 n.a. 10% n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes No PEO
OS KOVO Vol. O 171,250 17,370 n.a. 37% 37% (37%) Yes Yes ČMKOS, EMF
IG Metall Vol. O 2,306,283 80,120e n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes DGB, EMF
3F Vol. SO 341,672 n.a. 33.2% 75% 70% (100%) Yes No LO, EFBWW, EFFAT, ETF, UNI- Europa, EPSU, EMFe
Dansk Metal Vol. O 132,113 600 4.7% 80% 82% (82%) Yes No LO, EFBWW, ETF, UNI-Europa, EPSU, EMFe
DEF Vol. SO (OC) 29,769 200 0.9% 70% 7.4% (80%) Yes No LO, EMCEF, EFBWW, UNI-Europa, EMFe
HK Vol. SO 329,679 n.a. 74.2% 50% <10% (45%–50%) Yes No LO, ETF, UNI- Europa, EMFe
TL Vol. SO (OC) 27,700 n.a. 44.5% n.a. <5% (n.a.) Yes No LO, UNI- Europa, EPSU, EMFe
IDA Vol. SO (OC) 43,475 71 17.5% 60% 26% (58%) No No EMF
EMAF Vol. O 2,050 n.a. 30% 6% n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes EAKL
POEM Vol. O 30,000 n.a. 10% 25% 30.7% (n.a.) Yes No GCLG, EMF
CC.OO-FM Vol. O 166,370 n.a. 9.75% 11.46% n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes CC.OO, EMF
MCA-UGT Vol. O 138,000 n.a. n.a. 9.3% n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes UGT, EMF
ELA- Metala Vol. SO 31,203 n.a. 16% 19% n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes ELA-STV, EMF
USO Vol. O 121,389 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes  
CIG-Metal Vol. SO n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes CIG
LAB-FI Vol. O 13,450 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes LAB
TEK Vol. SO (OC) 68,000 700 19% 70% 8% (70%) Yesg No AKAVA, EMF, EMCEF, UNI- Europa
SA Vol. SO (OC) 32,200 400 4% 88% 4% (98%) Yes No SAK, EMF, EMCEF, UNI-Europa, BWI, EFBWW
UIL Vol. SO (OC) 73,000 1,200 14% 70% 13% (70%) Yesf No AKAVA, EMF, EMCEF, UNI- Europa
MLM Vol. O 167,300 6,000 20% 88% 95% (95%) Yes Yes SAK, EMF
TU Vol. SO 125,000 900 49% 79% 10% (82%) Yes No STTK, EFFAT, EMF, EMCEF, ETF, ETUF: TCL, UNI- Europa, EFBWW
FTM-CGT Vol. O n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. Yes No CGT, EMF
FO Metaux Vol. O n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. Yes No FO, EMF
FM-CFTC Vol. O n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. Yes No CFTC, EMF
FNTE-CGT Vol. SO n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. Yes No CGT, EMF
FO Défense Vol. SO n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. Yes No FO, EMF
FGMM-CFDT Vol. O n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. Yes No CFDT, EMF
CFDT-FEAE Vol. SO n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. Yes No CFDT, EMF
CFE-CGC Vol. SO n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. Yes No CGC
VASAS Vol. O 22,775 3,598 n.a. 10% 41.5% (n.a.) Yes Yes MSZOSZ, EMF
FGMOS Vol. O 6,995 310 n.a. 3.1% 3.5% (n.a.) Yes Yes MOSZ
LIGA VFS Vol. O 11,286 196 n.a. 4.9% 2.3% (n.a.) Yes Yes LIGA
FIOM Vol. O 363,326 n.a. n.a. 14.6% n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes CGIL, EMF
FIM Vol. O 200,848 6,336 16.5% 8.1% 8.5% (n.a.) Yes Yes CISL, EMF
Uilm Vol. O 100,000 10,000 32% 4% 13.4% (n.a.) Yes Yes UIL, EMF
MPPSS Vol. O 500 100 32% 2.5% 5% (5%) Yes No LDF
LMPSS Vol. O 1,760 400 50% 9% 20% (20%) Yes No LPSK
OGB-L Vol. O 61,000 n.a. 33% n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes EMF
LCGB Vol. O n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes n.a. EMF
LMA Vol. O 797 n.a. 54.1% 2.7% n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes LBAS
MWTUoL Vol. S 1,831 1,831 30.9% 20.9% 20.9% (70.9%) Yes Yes LBAS
GWU Vol. O 45,993 n.a. 17.5% 30% 100% (100%) Yes No ETUF: TCL, EMCEF, SCECBU, FERPA, EURO WEA, EMF, ETF, UNI-Europa, Euro-cadres, EPSU, EFFAT
Bond-genoten Vol. O 470,000d 3,800 21.5% 27%–28% 40% (40%) Yes Yes FNV, EMF
Bedrijven-bond Vol. O 85,000d 380 n.a. n.a. 4% (4%) Yes Yes CNV, EMF
De Unie Vol. SO n.a. 300 n.a. n.a. 3.1% (n.a.) Yes Yes MHP, EMF
VHP Corus Vol. S n.a. 280 n.a. n.a. 2.9% (29%) Yes Yes MHP
VHP Metalektro Vol. SO n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) Yes Yes CMHF, EMF
Metal NSZZ Solidarność Vol. O 60,000 12,500 <10% n.a. 40% (n.a.) Yes Yes NSZZ Solidar-ność, EMF
Metal OPZZ Vol. O 16,500 10,000 <10% n.a. 33% (n.a.) Yes Yes OPZZ, EMF
Metal PZZ Kadra Vol. SO 16,000 ~10,000 <10% n.a. 3% (n.a.) Yes Yes FZZ, CEC European Managers, EMCEF
Metal FZZ Vol. SO 3,000 ~1,500 <10% n.a. 5% (n.a.) Yes Yes FZZ
Metal ZZIT Vol. SO n.a. ~700 <10% n.a. 2% (n.a.) Yes Yes FZZ
STIMMS Vol. SO ~5,000 ~530 n.a. >30% n.a. (n.a.) Yes No CGTP-IN, EMFe
STIMMN Vol. SO ~10,000 ~270 n.a. >30% n.a. (n.a.) Yes No CGTP-IN, EMFe
SINDEL Vol. O 12,000 137 11% 14% 5% (5%) Yes No UGT, EMCEF, EPSU
SITESE Vol. SO 11,000 120 n.a. n.a. 5% (n.a.) Yes No UGT, UNI-Europa
SIMA Vol. O 5,000 70 n.a. 0.1% 6% (6%) Yes No EMF
FSS Metarom Vol. O 22,500 21,300 28.4% 65% 81% (81%) Yes Yes Cartel Alfa, EMF
SMETAL Vol. O 10,000 8,000 n.a. 18% 20% (20%) (Yes)d Yes BNS, EMF
IF Metall Vol. SO 440,000 23,000 25% 85%–90% 96% (100%) Yes Yes LO, EMF, EMCEF, ETUF: TCL
SI Vol. SO (OC) 115,500 2,750 22% 50% 10% (n.a.) Yes Yes SACO, EMF, EMCEF, Euro-cadres, FEANI, UNI-Europa
Unionen Vol. SO 500,000 6,000 45% 80%–85% 24% (100%) Yes Yes TCO, Euro-cadres, EMF
SKEI Vol. O 42,000 13,000 55% 40% 40% (40%) Yes No ZSSS, EMF
SKEM Vol. O 10,000 3,000 50% n.a. n.a. Yes No KNSS
NSS-SKI Vol. O n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. Yes No  
SKEIE Vol. O n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. Yes No KS90
OZ KOVO Vol. O 48,000 6,000 47% 25% 29% (29%) Yes No KOZ SR, EMF
OZ Metalurg Vol. O 13,198 11,091 15% 5%–10% 53% (53%) Yes No KOZ SR
OZ KOVO Metal Vol. O 150 100 5%–7% n.a. 0.5% (0.5%) Yes No NKOS
GMB Vol. O 590,069 n.a. 44.76% 2.33% n.a. (n.a.) Yes No TUC, STUC, ICTU, EPSU, UNI-Europa, EMCEF, EMF, EFFAT, ETF, EFBWW
Unite Vol. O 1,892,491 n.a. 22.55% 7.47% n.a. (n.a.) Yes No TUC, ETF, EPSU, EMCEF, EMF, EFFAT, EFBWW
Community Vol. O 31,886 17,000 16.98% n.a. 26.3% (n.a.) Yes No TUC, STUC, EMF

Note: See Annex for list of abbreviations and full names of organisations.

aVol. = voluntary

bAs a percentage of total trade union membership

cNational affiliations appear in italics; for the national level, only cross-sectoral (i.e. peak-level) associations are listed; for the European level, sectoral associations are listed only


eIndirect affiliation via higher-level or lower-level affiliates

fIndirect involvement via higher-level affiliation

*Domain overlap

O = Overlap; SO = Sectional overlap; S = Sectionalism; C = Congruence; OC = Occupational union

n.a. = not available

Source: EIRO national centres, 2008

Turning to the membership data of the trade unions, it emerges that female membership as a proportion of total trade union membership is usually low. In the majority of the trade unions for which data are available, women account for less than 20% of members. This reflects the low proportion of female employment in the sector. The few trade unions that record a female membership level of over 50% all overlap with the sector in one way or another. Although a breakdown of gender-specific membership percentages by sector are not available, there is good reason to assume that this high female proportion results from areas of the membership domain other than the steel industry.

The absolute numbers of trade union members differ markedly. The figures range from over two million members, as recorded in the case of the German Metalworkers’ Union (Industriegewerkschaft Metall, IG Metall), to fewer than 500 members, as observed in the case of the Slovak Metal Trade Union Association (Odborový zväz KOVO, OZ KOVO). This considerable variation reflects differences in the size of the economy and the comprehensiveness of the membership domain rather than the trade unions’ ability to attract members.

Since density corrects for differences in country size, the measure of membership strength is more appropriate for a comparative analysis. Sectoral domain density indicates the quantitative importance of the trade unions as the voice of workers in the sector. Once again, significant differences emerge between the trade unions. For instance, the General Workers’ Union (GWU) in Malta and the Union of Metalworkers (IF Metall) in Sweden register a sectoral density of 100% and 96% respectively; in contrast, the corresponding figure for OZ KOVO is only 0.5%. In the case of domain density, these differences are less pronounced but nevertheless considerable. A comparison between domain density and sectoral domain density gives an indication of the relative strength of the trade union in the steel industry compared with its membership domain in general. In almost all of the cases where data on both density measures are documented, sectoral domain density is higher than domain density. This means that the steel industry is a stronghold of unionisation. These data confirm earlier studies which have shown that the steel industry registers levels of trade union density that are clearly above country averages (see TN0412101S).

Employer organisations

Tables 4 and 5 present the membership data on the employer organisations. In total, 22 of the 26 countries under consideration register employer organisations. Of these countries, six have more than one employer organisation in the sector. In four countries – Estonia, Lithuania, Luxembourg and Malta – there is no association that meets the definition of a sector-related social partner organisation, as defined earlier. This does not mean, however, that business has remained unorganised. Generally, business interest organisations may also deal with interests other than those related to industrial relations. Organisations specialised in matters other than industrial relations are commonly designated as trade associations (see TN0311101S). Sector-level trade associations usually outnumber sector-level employer organisations (see Traxler, 1993). In line with this, Table 4 includes several associations that are not engaged in collective bargaining, with their profile resembling a trade association rather than an employer organisation. Regardless of this, they are covered by this study as a result of their affiliation to Eurofer.

As regards domain demarcation, only a few cases of sectionalism are evident among the employer organisations. Almost 45% of the organisations listed in Table 4 have demarcated their domain in a way that overlaps with the sector. Sectionalist overlaps and congruent membership demarcations both account for approximately 22% and 27% of the total number of organisations respectively. Overlaps typically ensue from domains that encompass broader areas of the metal industry. Sectionalist overlaps are most frequently based on differentiation by company size combined with a broader domain in terms of business activity. In particular, this pattern – which equips small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with separate associations – has given rise to a comparatively large number of organisations in Italy. If there is more than one employer organisation in a country, these organisations usually manage to foster non-competing relationships. Their activities are complementary to each other as a result of inter-associational differentiation by either membership demarcation or functions and tasks. Thus, no case of inter-associational rivalry is recorded in any of the country studies.

As the figures on density show (Table 4), membership strength in terms of companies varies somewhat with regard to both the membership domain in general and the sector-related densities. Far less convergence is evident as regards density in terms of employees. The densities of companies tend to be lower than the densities of employees – this indicates a higher propensity of the larger companies to associate, compared with their smaller counterparts. Regardless of domain density, sectoral density and sectoral domain density, few of the organisations register a density of less than 50% of the employees. In Italy, relatively low densities characterise several organisations of the SMEs. This is attributed not only to the reduced willingness of small companies to gather in associations but also to the high degree of fragmentation of the associational system, in particular with regard to the representation of SMEs. This situation contrasts with the large number of organisations in other countries that register densities of 70% or more of the employees, even amounting to 100% in several cases of voluntary membership. Overall, there is little difference between the density of domains and the sector-related densities. In the case of both companies and employees, high levels of domain density usually extend to sectoral density and sectoral domain density. It can be inferred from these figures that the employers are highly organised in the steel industry. In particular, this applies to density in terms of employees.

Table 4: Domain coverage, membership and density of employer organisations in steel industry, 2006–2007
Country Domain coverage Membership Density (%)
Typea Companies Companies in sector Employees Employees in sector Companies Employees
Domain Sector (sectoral domain) Domain Sector (sectoral domain)
FBS SO oblig. 30 15 16,131 15,271 100% 30% (100%) 100% 74% (100%)
FMMI SO oblig. 902 n.a. 117,966 n.a. 100% n.a. (100%) 100% n.a. (100%)
GSV C vol. 15 15 16,960 16,960 100% 100% (100%) 100% 100% (100%)
BAMI O vol. 41 6 15,000 9,093 n.a. n.a. (n.a.) n.a. 76.3% (76.3%)
SYMEBIK O vol. 60 n.a. 4,000 23 n.a. 100% (100%) n.a. 100% (100%)
OSHŽ C vol. 13 13 22,000b 22,000b 5% 5% (5%) 47% 47% (47%)
AGV Stahl ~C vol. 74 n.a. 83,000 n.a. 90% n.a. (n.a.) 90% n.a. (n.a.)
WV Stahl ~C vol. 100 ~100 92,000 ~92,000 99% 99% (99%) 99% 99% (99%)
E-V S vol. 40 n.a. 25,000 n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) n.a. n.a. (n.a.)
DI O vol. 11,000 27 500,000 ~1,900 n.a. 33% (33%) n.a. 65%–75% (65%–75%)
EN.E.EPE.M O vol. 65 n.a. 9,500 n.a. 43.3% n.a. 59% n.a. (n.a.)
POVAS SO vol. 4,000 n.a. 10,000 n.a. 44.4% n.a. 33.3% n.a. (n.a.)
HSMU C vol. 3 3 n.a. n.a. 100% n.a. (100%) 100% n.a. (100%)
UNESID C vol. 190 190 27,330 27,330 95% 95% (95%) 96% 96% (96%)
Metallinja-lostajat (Teknologia-teollisuus) O vol. 1,470 n.a. 250,000 11,600 13% 4% (4%) 82% 95% (95%)
GESIM O vol. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
SPAS S vol. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
FFA C vol. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a.
MVAE O vol. 14 6 13,000 7,000 15.2% 13% (13%) 92.5% 80.1% (80.1%)
Federmec-canica O vol. 12,000 n.a. 900,000 n.a. 20% 11.1% (11.1%) 55.4% 52.3% (52.3%)
Federacciai ~C vol. 150 n.a. 39,000 n.a. 11.1% 11.1% (11.1%) 52.3% 52.3% (52.3%)
Union Meccanica SO vol. 20,000 n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) n.a. n.a. (n.a.)
Confarti-gianato–MDP SO vol. 30,000 n.a. 84,000 n.a. 30% 8.9% (30%) 30% 0.5% (17.8%)
CNA- Produzione SO vol. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) n.a. n.a. (n.a.)
CLAAI SO vol. 115,976 n.a. 48,749 n.a. 8% n.a. (n.a.) 8% n.a. (n.a.)
Casartigiani SO vol. 84,663 n.a. 35,587 n.a. 5.8% n.a. (n.a.) 5.8% n.a. (n.a.)
MASOC O vol. >140 3–5 33,262 >2,600 n.a. n.a. (n.a.) n.a. n.a. (n.a.)
FME-NCW O vol. 2,750 20 260,000 n.a. 80% 80%–100% (80%–100%) n.a. n.a. (n.a.)
ZPPH ~C vol. 31 15 n.a. 27,000 n.a. n.a. (n.a.) n.a. 80% (80%)
AIMMAP O vol. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. n.a. (n.a.) n.a. n.a. (n.a.)
FPM O vol. 245 60 48,000 44,000 100% 100% (100%) 100% 100% (100%)
SMA O vol. 200 145 24,000 n.a. 100% 100% (100%) 100% 100% (100%)
Jernkontoret ~C vol. 19 19 22,850 22,850 n.a. 13% (n.a.) n.a. 93% (n.a.)
ZDS O vol. 1,409 n.a. 205,000 n.a. 0.45% n.a. (n.a.) 45% n.a. (n.a.)
GZS O vol. 16,396 77 290,000 n.a. 16.6% 90% (90%) 47.6% 90% (90%)
ZHŤPG SR O vol. 42 9 26,000 14,000 n.a. 8% (8%) 70% 65% (65%)
UK Steel C vol. 26 26 >18,400 >18,400 90%–95% 90%–95% (90%–95%) n.a. n.a. (n.a.)

Note: See Annex for list of abbreviations and full names of organisations.

avol. = voluntary membership; oblig. = obligatory membership

bIndirect affiliation via lower- or higher-level affiliate

*Domain overlap

O = Overlap; SO = Sectional overlap; S = Sectionalism; C = Congruence

n.a. = not available

Source: EIRO national centres, 2008

Table 5: Collective bargaining, consultation and national/European affiliations of employer organisations in steel industry, 2006–2007
Country Collective bargaining Consultation National and European affiliationsa
FBS yes yes WKÖ, Eurofer
FMMI yes yes WKÖ
GSV yes no FEB/VBO, Eurofer
BAMI yes no BIA, Eurofer, EuroMetaux
SYMEBIK yes no
OSHŽ no yes SP ČR, HK ČR, Euroferb
AGV Stahl yes yes BDA
WV Stahl no no BDI, Eurofer
E-V no no Eurofer
DI yes no DA
EN.E.EPE.M yes no SEV, Europump
HSMU no yes Eurofer
UNESID yesc yes CEOE, Eurofer
Metallinja-lostajat (Teknologia-teollisuus) yes yes EK, CEEMET, EICTA, Euroferb, EuroMetaux
SPAS no no Eurofer
FFA no no Eurofer
MVAE yes yes Eurofer
Federmeccanica yes yes Confindustria, CEEMET
Federacciai no yes Confindustria, Eurofer
Union Meccanica yes yes Confapi
Confartigianato-MDP yes yes Confindustria
CNA-Produzione yes yes CNA, EMU
CLAAI yes yes
Casartigiani yes yes
ZPPH yes yes Eurofer
FPM yes yes CONPIROM, Euroferb, ESTA
SMA yes yes SN
Jernkontoret no no Eurofer
ZDS yes no
GZS yes no EICTA
UK Steel no no Eurofer, EEF

Note: See Annex for list of abbreviations and full names of organisations.

aNational affiliations appear in italics; only affiliations to sectoral European associations are listed

bIndirect affiliation via lower-level or higher-level affiliate

cIndirect involvement via higher-level affiliation

Source: EIRO national centres, 2008

Collective bargaining and its actors

Table 6 gives an overview of the system of sector-related collective bargaining. The standard measure of the importance of collective bargaining as a means of employment regulation is collective bargaining coverage – that is, the total number of employees covered by collective bargaining as a proportion of the total number of employees within a certain segment of the economy (see Traxler, Blaschke and Kittel, 2001). Accordingly, the sector’s rate of collective bargaining coverage is defined as the ratio of the number of employees covered by any kind of collective agreement to the total number of employees in the sector.

To delineate the bargaining system, two further indicators are used. The first indicator refers to the relevance of multi-employer bargaining, compared with single-employer bargaining. Multi-employer bargaining is defined as being conducted by an employer organisation on behalf of the employer side. In the case of single-employer bargaining, it is the company or its divisions that is the party to the agreement. This includes instances where two or more companies jointly negotiate an agreement. The relative importance of multi-employer bargaining, measured as a percentage of the total number of employees covered by a collective agreement, therefore indicates the impact of the employer organisations on the overall collective bargaining process.

The second indicator considers whether statutory extension schemes have been applied to the sector. For reasons of brevity, this analysis is confined to extension schemes that widen the scope of a collective agreement to employers not affiliated to the signatory employer organisation; extension regulations targeting the employees are not significant to this analysis for two reasons. Firstly, extending a collective agreement to the employees who are not unionised in the company covered by the collective agreement is a standard of the International Labour Organization (ILO), aside from any national legislation. Secondly, employers have good reason to extend a collective agreement concluded by them, even when they are not formally obliged to do so: if they fail to do so, they could provide an incentive for their workforce to unionise.

Compared with employee-related extension procedures, schemes that target the employers are far more significant for the strength of collective bargaining in general and for multi-employer bargaining in particular. This is because employers are capable of refraining from joining an employer organisation and from entering single-employer bargaining in the context of a purely voluntaristic system. Therefore, employer-related extension practices increase the coverage of multi-employer bargaining. Moreover, when it is pervasive, an extension agreement may encourage more employers to join the controlling employer organisation; membership will, in turn, enable them to participate in the bargaining process and to benefit from the organisation’s related services in a situation where the respective collective agreement will bind them in any case (see Traxler, Blaschke and Kittel, 2001).

It should be noted that the category of extension practices also covers functional equivalents to these practices. There are two kinds of such equivalents. The first type is obligatory membership, which is legally established in public-law interest associations such as Austria’s Association of Mining and Steel Industries (FBS) and the Association of Austrian Machinery and Metalware Industries (Fachverband Maschinen und Metallwaren Industrie, FMMI). The other functional equivalent to statutory extension schemes can be found in Italy. Under the country’s constitution, minimum conditions of employment must apply to all employees. The labour court rulings relate this principle to the multi-employer agreements, in the sense that they are seen as being generally binding (see IST, 2001).

Table 6: System of sectoral collective bargaining in steel industry, 2006–2007
Country Collective bargaining coverage (CBC) Proportion of multi-employer bargaining (MEB) as % of total CBC Extension practicesa
AT 100% 100% Pervasive
BE 99% 100%b Pervasive
BG 100% 100%b Pervasive
CY 100% n/ad No practice
CZ 61% 0% No practice
DE 100% 100% No practice
DK 85% 90% No practice
EE n.a. 0% No practice
EL 100% 100% Pervasive
ES 100% 100%b Pervasive
FI 100% 100% Pervasive
FR 100% 100% Pervasive
HU 61.7% 0%e No practice
IT 70% 100% b Pervasive
LT 25% 0% No practice
LU 95% 0% No practice
LV 100% 100%b,c Pervasive
MT ~100% 0% No practice
NL ~100% 25% Pervasive
PL >90% 80%–90% No practice
PT ~100% ~55% Pervasive
RO 100% 100% Pervasive
SE 100% 100% No practice
SI >90% 100% b Pervasive
SK 90% 70% Limited/exceptional
UK 66% 0% No practice

Note: Collective bargaining coverage = employees covered as a percentage of the total number of employees in the sector

MEB = multi-employer bargaining relative to single-employer bargaining

a= Extension practices include functional equivalents to extension provisions, i.e. obligatory membership and labour court rulings; cases of functional equivalents appear in parentheses.

b= complementary company bargaining

c= until end of 2007

d= there is only one company for which the employer organisation acts as signatory party

e= last case of MEB dates back to 2002

n.a. = not available

n/a = not applicable

Source: EIRO national centres, 2008

Collective bargaining coverage

Overall, collective bargaining coverage in the steel industry is generally high, with 19 of the 25 countries for which data are available (no data being available for Estonia) registering a very high coverage rate of 90% or more (Table 6). In 14 of these countries, the coverage rate amounts to or comes close to 100%. In the remaining countries, 60% or more of the employees are covered, with the exception of Lithuania, which has a coverage level of 25%; this comparatively low level combines with single-employer bargaining. Depending on national circumstances, several factors, sometimes interacting with each other, account for the generally high coverage rates. In the vast majority of countries in which coverage peaks at 100%, the predominance of multi-employer bargaining coincides with pervasive extension practices. While coverage in countries with prevalent multi-employer bargaining is generally high, much greater variance is evident across countries where single-employer bargaining predominates. In such circumstances, coverage ranges from 25% (Lithuania) to almost 100% (Malta and the Netherlands). Total coverage in single-employer bargaining systems is usually contingent on trade union density, which interacts with the economic concentration of a sector. Unionisation generally increases with company size (see Visser, 1991). The relatively high economic concentration of the steel industry in terms of employment is thus conducive to both unionisation and favourable collective bargaining coverage, and explains why coverage is also high in most cases of predominantly single-employer bargaining.

Despite the strength of collective bargaining, unwilling employers are not completely absent. In the Czech Republic, the Branch Association of the Steel Federation (OSHŽ) – which is indirectly linked to Eurofer through its affiliation to the Steel Federation (Hutnictví železa, HZ) – has refused to enter collective bargaining since 2004. Similarly, large companies in Romania have frequently refused to conclude single-employer agreements (RO0805029I, RO0704039I).

With the exception of Estonia, a general conclusion can at least be drawn regarding the relative importance of multi-employer bargaining. This type of bargaining prevails in 17 countries, while the remaining eight countries are characterised by the predominance of single-employer bargaining. It should be noted that the distinction between multi-employer and single-employer bargaining does not fully describe the complexity of the bargaining systems. Cyprus represents a borderline case in that the trade unions and employer organisation are signatory parties to an agreement that covers a single company – the only one existing in the sector. While this is a multi-employer agreement in formal terms, it constitutes a single-employer settlement in practice. In several countries, a multi-level bargaining system is established, which combines multi-employer bargaining with single-employer agreements. In such cases, the single-employer settlements contain more favourable employment terms than the multi-employer agreements. In the Netherlands, a single-employer agreement exists for the largest company, whereas the rest of the sector’s companies are covered by multi-employer bargaining.

It is also important to note that the scope of multi-employer agreements varies considerably. In some countries, the sector is covered by a central agreement, as is the case in Bulgaria, or by a multi-industry agreement, as seen in Denmark. In other countries, the multi-employer agreements embrace broader areas of the metal industry, as observed for instance in Austria and Spain. Finally, there are cases where the scope of the agreements largely corresponds with the demarcation of the steel industry (as outlined above); this is the case, for example, in Belgium and Germany. In other cases, for example in Poland, multi-employer agreements of distinct sector-related scope coexist. These sector-related differences in scope mainly reflect the membership domain of the employer organisations. In several countries, the scope of the agreements is also differentiated by employee categories, a factor which reflects the demarcations of trade union domains. Hence, the main line of differentiation refers to the distinction between blue-collar and white-collar employees, as seen for instance in Austria, Finland and Sweden. Finally, multi-employer bargaining is sometimes also differentiated by region – as is the case in Germany and Slovakia.

Participation in public policymaking

Interest associations may partake in public policy in two basic ways: firstly, they may be consulted by the authorities in matters affecting their members; alternatively, they may be represented on ‘corporatist’, that is tripartite, committees and boards of policy concertation. This study considers only cases of consultation and corporatist participation that explicitly relate to sector-specific matters. Consultation processes are not necessarily institutionalised and, therefore, the organisations consulted by the authorities may vary according to the issues to be addressed and also over time, depending on changes in government. Moreover, the authorities may initiate a consultation process on an ad hoc basis rather than regular basis. Given this variability, Tables 2 and 3 list only those sector-related trade unions and employer organisations that are usually consulted. Depending on country-specific regulations and practices, the sector-related organisations may directly or indirectly participate in public policy. Indirect participation takes place through their affiliation to a peak-level organisation that obtains participatory rights.

The trade unions are usually consulted in 15 of the 26 countries under consideration. If such consultation occurs, this process usually involves all of the existing trade unions. Consultation practices involving organised business mirrors the situation regarding the trade unions: in all of the countries where the trade unions are consulted, organised business associations are also consulted. The only exceptions in this instance are Estonia and Luxembourg, where no sector-related business interest organisation exists. Hence, the general pattern is that each of the two sides of industry is either consulted or not consulted on a regular basis. It is worth noting that in countries without regular consultation practices, the two sides of industry are often consulted on an ad hoc basis – as is the case for example in Denmark and the United Kingdom (UK). In addition to the business associations, large employers may also be directly involved in consultation procedures – particularly when policymaking follows the pattern of a ‘company state’ rather than that of an ‘associative state’ (see Grant, 1993). A case in point is Luxembourg, where the largest steel company – ArcelorMittal – is represented on the country’s steel committee.

Tripartite participation

Turning to the issue of tripartite participation, it emerges that sector-specific tripartite bodies are established only in Austria, Bulgaria, Estonia, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg and Poland (Table 7). The legal basis of these tripartite bodies is either a statute or an agreement between the parties involved. Their scope of activities most frequently focuses on restructuring problems and skills-related issues. Some business associations that are represented on the boards are not listed in Tables 4 and 5, since they do not meet the criteria of a social partner organisation, as established in this comparative study.

Several countries such as the Czech Republic, Finland and Romania have sector-unspecific – in other words cross-sectoral – tripartite bodies for concertation of economic and social policy; these may also address the sector, depending on the particular circumstances and issues that may arise.

Table 7: Tripartite sector-specific boards of public policy in steel industry, 2006–2007
Country Name of body and scope of activity Origin Participants
Trade unions Business associations
AT Stahlstiftung – re-employment scheme Agreement GMTN, GPA-DJP FBS, FMMI, other associations
BG Council for Social Partnership – sector-related regulations Statutory Metalizy, Metallurgy BAMI
EE Council for the Engineering and Metal Industry – skill formation Statutory EMAF EML, Estonian Chamber of Commerce and Industry
IT Observatory for the Monitoring of Productive Activities – industrial policy Statutory FIOM, FIM, Uilm Federmeccanica
LU Tripartite Steel Sector Committee – sectoral restructuring Statutory OGB-L, LCGB  
LV National Tripartite Cooperation Council – vocational training, labour affairs, social security, environment protection, regional development Statutory LMA Association of Mechanical Engineering and Metalworking Industries
PL Tripartite Body for the Metal Industry –sectoral restructuring Statutory Metalworking unions of NSZZ Solidarność, OPZZ, PZZ, and ZZIT; PZZ Kadra ZPPH

Note: See Annex for list of abbreviations and full names of organisations.

Source: EIRO national centres, 2008

European level of interest representation

At European level, eligibility for consultation and participation in social dialogue is linked to three criteria, as defined by the European Commission (see Commission Decision (34Kb PDF) of 20 May 1998). Accordingly, a social partner organisation must have the following attributes:

  • be cross-industry or relate to specific sectors or categories, and be organised at European level;
  • consist of organisations that are themselves an integral and recognised part of Member States’ social partner structures and that have the capacity to negotiate agreements, as well as being representative of all Member States, as far as possible;
  • have adequate structures to ensure the effective participation in the consultation process.

Regarding social dialogue, the constituent feature is the ability of such organisations to negotiate on behalf of their members and to conclude binding agreements. Accordingly, this section on the European associations of the steel industry will analyse these organisations’ membership domain, the composition of their membership and their ability to negotiate.

There is one single European association each on the employee and employer side, whose membership domain is sector-related as defined earlier – namely, EMF on the employee side and Eurofer on the employer side. The following analysis will focus on these two associations, while providing supplementary information on other European associations that are linked to the sector’s national industrial relations actors through their affiliation to European associations other than EMF and Eurofer.

Membership domain

As regards the demarcation of the membership domain, EMF overlaps in relation to the steel industry, since it organises the metal industry in the broad sense. On the other hand, the membership domain of Eurofer is largely congruent with the sector.

Membership composition

Turning to the membership composition, it should be noted that the countries covered by the associations extend beyond the EU Member States examined in this study to include other countries. However, the report will only consider the members of the EU countries covered in this study. Furthermore, the report will only examine EMF affiliates that are members of the steel industry, as defined earlier.

Following these specifications, Table 8 lists the members of EMF. Accordingly, EMF organises 23 of the 26 EU Member States under consideration; the three Baltic states – Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania – are not covered.

Table 8: Members of EMF, 2008
Country Members
BG Metalizy, Metallurgy, TUFOEMI
DE IG Metall
DK Co-Industri (3F, Dansk Metal, DEF, HK, TL), IDA*
NL Bondgenoten, Bedrijvenbond, De Unie, VHP Metalektro
PL Metal-NSZZ S, Metal-OPZZ
SE IF Metall, SI, Unionen
UK GMB, Unite, Community

Note: See Annex for list of abbreviations and full names of organisations.

The negotiating mandate for EMF is a general mandate conferred by the members.

Membership list is confined to the sector-related associations of the countries under consideration.

Associations that appear in parentheses are sector-related trade unions listed in Table 3 which are indirectly affiliated via national higher-order associations or lower-level affiliates.

* Not involved in collective bargaining

** Indirectly involved in collective bargaining via higher-level or lower-level affiliations

Source: EIRO national centres, 2008

The membership of Eurofer is mixed (Table 9), as companies as well as associations are eligible for regular membership. A special case is the Czech organisation HZ. Eurofer lists HZ as an association because it performs associational tasks. However, HZ is a joint stock company in formal terms; therefore, it is subsumed under the list of companies in Table 9, which gives basic data on the members of Eurofer. Overall, 14 of the countries are covered by associations; company members are present in 16 of the countries. In eight of countries in question, Eurofer records both associations and companies as members. Overall, associations and companies that are affiliated to Eurofer can be found in 22 of the 26 countries under consideration. No members are recorded for Cyprus, Estonia, Lithuania and Malta.

Table 9: Members of Eurofer, 2008
Country Members
  Associations Number of company members
CY 0
CZ 4** (OSHŽ*)
DE WV Stahl*, E-V* 8
DK 1
EE 0
FI Metallinjalostajat (Teknologiateollisuus) 2
HU MVAE* 1**
IT Federacciai* 4
LT 0
LU 1**
LV 1
MT 0
NL 1
PT 1**
RO Uniromsider (FPM) 0
SE Jernkontoret* 0
SI 2
SK 1**
UK UK Steel* 1

Notes: Membership list is confined to the sector-related associations of the countries under consideration. The negotiating mandate for Eurofer is an ad hoc mandate conferred by the members on a case-by-case basis. Associations in parentheses are sector-related organisations listed in Table 5 that are indirectly affiliated via national higher-order organisations or lower-level affiliates.

Members refuse to recognise trade unions and to enter collective bargaining.

* Not involved in collective bargaining.

** Company members from the respective country are party to collective agreements of major importance.

Source: EIRO national centres, 2008

Involvement in collective bargaining and membership strength

In addition to the territorial remit of the European associations, the weight of their affiliates in the national industrial relations systems is another criterion for evaluating their membership structure. This weight can be measured in two ways – by involvement of the national affiliates in collective bargaining or by their membership strength. Table 8 also summarises the bargaining role of the affiliates of EMF. Almost all member unions of EMF conduct collective bargaining, such that they have a bargaining role in the countries covered by EMF.

Table 9 indicates whether the members of Eurofer are a signatory party to a collective agreement of major importance to the national bargaining systems. In half of the countries for which associational members are registered, the members are party to collective bargaining. In five of the countries, Eurofer has company members that conclude single-employer agreements of major importance to the sector. Either associational members or company members of Eurofer are thus engaged in collective bargaining in almost half of the 26 countries.

In terms of the membership strength of the national affiliates, the appropriate measures of such strength are the number of members in the sector and the sectoral domain density. For the trade unions, this measure is documented in Table 3. As far as available data on membership of the national trade unions provide sufficient information on their relative strength (Table 3), it can be concluded that EMF tends to organise the largest national trade unions of the sector in the EU Member States. The only exception is Slovakia, where the major trade union is not under the umbrella of EMF. In 13 of the 23 countries covered by EMF, any of the existing sector-related unions is under the umbrella of EMF. It is evident from these data that EMF represents the vast majority of the sector’s unionised employees across Europe.

In half of the 14 countries covered by associational members of Eurofer, the national affiliate is the only voice of business that covers the majority of employees in the sector (Table 5). In the Czech Republic, the Eurofer member association also holds a somewhat monopolistic position, but represents fewer than half of the employees in the sector. Of the countries where more than one business association exists, the Eurofer affiliate records a sectoral domain density of over 50% of the employees in both Austria and Italy. For the remaining countries with associational members – France, Germany, Greece and the UK – data on sector-related membership strength are lacking.

Capacity to negotiate

The third criterion of representativeness at the European level refers to the capacity of an organisation to negotiate on behalf of its own members. Tables 8 and 9 present the data on this issue for the trade unions and business associations respectively. EMF has a general negotiating mandate, while Eurofer can be equipped by its members with a negotiating mandate on a case-by-case basis.

As final proof of the sector-related significance of EMF and Eurofer, it is worth making a comparison with other European associations that may be important representatives of the sector. This can be done by reviewing the membership of national organisations affiliated to sector-specific European associations. For the trade unions, these affiliations are listed in Table 3. As a consequence of the multiplicity of trade unions listed in Table 3, numerous affiliations to European organisations other than EMF are also evident. For brevity, only those European organisations that cover at least three countries are mentioned here:

  • the European Mine, Chemical and Energy Workers’ Federation (EMCEF), which covers 14 affiliated trade unions in eight countries;
  • UNI-Europa, with 14 affiliations in seven countries;
  • the European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions (EFFAT) and the European Federation of Public Service Unions (EPSU), which each covers eight trade union affiliations in five countries;
  • the European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF), with seven members in four countries;
  • the European Trade Union Federation – Textiles, Clothing and Leather (ETUF:TCL), with four members in four countries;
  • the European Federation of Building and Woodworkers (EFBWW), with seven affiliations in three countries;
  • the Council of European Professional and Managerial Staff (Eurocadres), with four affiliations in three countries.

These affiliations do not necessarily relate to the sector. In principle, this relationship depends on how the national trade unions demarcate their domain. In many cases, the affiliations to European associations other than EMF result from overlapping and rather broadly defined membership domains of the national trade unions, therefore involving member groups outside of the steel industry. Links to the steel industry are most plausible in the case of UNI-Europa, EPSU and Eurocadres, since their domains cross-cut sectoral demarcations and thus include certain parts of the sector. At any rate, each of these European associations covers only a minority of the 26 countries. Even though the list of affiliations in Table 3 may be incomplete, this overview clearly confirms that the sector-related national trade unions are most frequently affiliated to EMF.

An analogous review of the memberships of the national employer associations can be derived from Table 5. Most of the organisations have few affiliations to European associations. Only one European association comprises three members from three countries – namely, the Council of European Employers of the Metal, Engineering and Technology-based Industries (CEEMET). However, in terms of both the number of affiliations as well as territorial coverage, CEEMET lags far behind Eurofer.

In conclusion, therefore, EMF and Eurofer emerge as the most important sector-related European organisations in the steel industry.


Compared with other sectors, industrial relations are strongly organised in the steel industry. This characteristic is manifested by the high degree of unionisation, the strong presence of employer organisations which also have a high density, and the high level of collective bargaining coverage.

As a comparison between the figures on cross-sectoral collective bargaining coverage in the 25 EU Member States (the EU25, prior to the accession of Bulgaria and Romania) indicates, the steel industry’s bargaining coverage is higher than the country average in 18 of the 19 countries for which comparable data are available (see Marginson and Traxler, 2005). Industrial relations are also strongly organised as a result of the prevalence of large-scale manufacturing in the sector. This translates into substantial economic concentration and the predominance of blue-collar employment, both of which foster unionisation. In contrast to other sectors, economic concentration has not marginalised employer organisations and multi-employer bargaining. This can be attributed to the capital-intensive production of intermediate goods, which has made the steel industry particularly sensitive to the business cycle. At the same time, it has made restructuring an endemic problem in this industry. This in turn has stimulated associational action on the employer side as well as its cooperation with organised labour. Such a tendency applies not only to labour matters but also in relation to coping with restructuring. It is also reflected at the European level, where the steel industry has been at the forefront in terms of developing social partnership relations.


Grant, W., Business and politics in Britain, London, Macmillan, 1993.

Institut des Sciences du Travail (IST), Collective agreement extension mechanisms in EU member countries, Catholic University of Louvain, Typescript, 2001.

Marginson, P. and Traxler, F., ‘After enlargement: Preconditions and prospects for bargaining coordination’, Transfer, Vol. 11, No. 3, 2005.

Traxler. F., ‘Business associations and labour unions in comparison’, British Journal of Sociology, No. 44, 1993.

Traxler, F., ‘The metamorphoses of corporatism’, European Journal of Political Research, Vol. 43, No. 4, 2004.

Traxler, F., Blaschke, S. and Kittel, B., National labour relations in internationalised markets, Oxford University Press, 2001.

Visser, J. ‘Trends in trade union membership’, OECD Employment Outlook, 1991.

Franz Traxler, Department of Industrial Sociology, University of Vienna

Annex: List of abbreviations

Country Abbreviation Full name of organisation
Austria (AT) FBS Association of Mining and Steel Industries
  FMMI Association of Austrian Machinery and Metalware Industries
  GMTN Metalworking, Textiles, Agriculture and Food-processing Union
  GPA-DJP Union of Salaried Employees, Graphical Workers and Journalists
  ÖGB Austrian Trade Union Federation
  WKÖ Austrian Federal Economic Chamber
Belgium (BE) ABVV/FGTB Belgian General Federation of Labour
  ABVV-Metaal Belgian General Federation of Metal
  ACLVB/CGSLB Federation of Liberal Trade Unions of Belgium
  ACV/CSC General Christian Trade Union
  ACV/CSC Metaal General Christian Trade Union – Metal
  CNE-GNC National Federation of White-collar Workers
  FEB/VBO Belgian Federation of Employers
  GSV Steel Industry Federation
  LBC/NVK Federation of White-collar Workers and Managers
  MWB-FGTB Metalworkers’ Wallonnie Brussels – Belgian General Federation of Labour
  SETCa/BBTK Belgian Union of White-collar, Technical and Executive Employees
Bulgaria (BG) BAMI Bulgarian Association of the Metallurgical Industry
  BIA Bulgarian Industrial Association
  CITUB Confederation of Independent Trade Unions in Bulgaria
  CL Podkrepa Confederation of Labour ‘Podkrepa’
  Metalizy ‘Metalizy’ Trade Union
  Metallurgy National Federation ‘Metallurgy’
  TUFOEMI Confederation of Independent Trade Unions in Bulgaria
Cyprus (CY) OBIEK Federation of Industrial Workers of Cyprus
  SEK Cyprus Workers’ Confederation
  SEMMHK/PEO Cyprus Metalworkers, Mechanics and Electricians Trade Union – Pancyprian Federationof Labour
  SYMEBIK Cyprus Metalworking Industry Employers’ Association
Czech Republic (CZ) ČMKOS Czech-Moravian Confederation of Trade Unions
  HK ČR Czech Chamber of Commerce
  Steel Federation
  OS KOVO Czech Metalworkers’ Federation KOVO
  OSHŽ Branch Association of the Steel Industry
  SP ČR Czech Confederation of Industry
Denmark (DK) 3F United Federation of Danish Workers
  CO-Industri Central Organisation of Industrial Employees in Denmark
  DA Confederation of Danish Employers
  Dansk Metal Danish Metalworkers’ Union
  DEF Danish Union of Electricians
  DI Confederation of Danish Industries
  HK Union of Commercial and Clerical Employees in Denmark
  IDA Danish Society of Engineers
  LO Danish Confederation of Trade Unions
  TL Danish Association of Professional Technicians
Estonia (EE) EAKL Confederation of Estonian Trade Unions
  EMAF Estonian Metalworkers’ Trade Union Federation
Finland (FI) AKAVA Confederation of Unions for Academic Professionals
  EK Confederation of Finnish Industries
  Metallinjalostajat Association of Finnish Steel and Metal Producers
  MLM Finnish Metalworkers’ Union
  SA Finnish Electrical Workers’ Union
  SAK Central Organisation of Finnish Trade Unions
  STTK Finnish Confederation of Salaried Employees
  TEK Finnish Association of Graduate Engineers
  TU Union of Salaried Employees
  UIL Union of Professional Engineers in Finland
France (FR) CFDT French Democratic Confederation of Labour
  CFDT-FEAE French Democratic Confederation of Labour – Public Sector Defence Workers’ Federation
  CFE-CGC French Confederation of Professional and Managerial Staff – General Confederation of Professional and Managerial Staff
  CFTC French Christian Workers’ Confederation
  CGT General Confederation of Labour
  FFA French Steel Federation
  FGMM-CFDT Metalworking and Mining Workers’ Federation – French Democratic Confederation of Labour
  FM-CFTC National Trade Union Federation for the Metalworking Industry and Related Activites – French Christian Workers’ Confederation
  FNTE-CGT State Employees’ Federation – General Confederation of Labour
  FO Force Ouvrière
  FO Défense Force Ouvrière – Defence
  FO Metaux Force Ouvrière – Metal
  FTM-CGT Metalworkers’ Federation – General Confederation of Labour
  GESIM Steel and Metallurgy Industry Employers’ Group
  MEDEF Movement of French Enterprises
  SPAS Fine Grain and Special Steel Association
Germany (DE) AGV Stahl Steel Employers’ Association
  BDA German Confederation of Employers’ Associations
  BDI Federation of German Industries
  DGB Confederation of German Trade Unions
  E-V Special Steel Association
  IG Metall German Metalworkers’ Union
  WV Stahl German Steel Federation
Greece (EL) EN.E.EPE.M Association of Metal Processing Companies
  GCLG General Confederation of Labour of Greece
  GSEVEE Hellenic Confederation of Professionals, Craftsmen and Merchants
  HSMU Hellenic Steelmakers’ Union
  POEM Hellenic Federation of Metalworkers
  POVAS National Federation of Aluminium and Steel Small Industry Manufacturers
  SEV Hellenic Federation of Enterprises
Hungary (HU) FGMOS National Association of Workers’ Councils in Metal and Machinery Industries
  LIGA Democratic League of Independent Trade Unions
  LIGA VFS LIGA Metal and Iron Industry Association
  MOSZ National Federation of Workers’ Councils
  MSZOSZ Association of Hungarian Trade Unions
  MVAE Association of the Hungarian Steel Industry
  VASAS Metalworkers’ Union
Italy (IT) Casartigiani Autonomous Confederation of Artisan Unions
  CGIL General Confederation of Italian Workers
  CLAAI Confederation of Free Italian Artisan Associations
  CNA National Confederation of Artisans and of the Small and Medium-sized Enterprises
  CNA-Produzione National Confederation of Artisans and of the Small and Medium-sized Enterprises – Production
  CONFAPI Italian Confederation of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises
  Confartigianato-MDP General Italian Confederation of Artisans – Metalworking Production
  Confindustria General Confederation of Italian Industry
  Federacciai Federation of the Italian Steel Companies
  Federmeccanica Metalworking Employers’ Federation
  FIM Italian Federation of Metalworkers
  FIOM Federation of Metallurgical Employees and Workers
  UIL Union of Italian Workers
  UILM Italian Metalworkers’ Union
  Union Meccanica National Union of Small and Medium-sized Metalworking Enterprises
Latvia (LV) LBAS Free Trade Union Confederation of Latvia
  LDDK Latvian Employers’ Confederation
  LMA Metalworkers’ Trade Union
  MASOC Association of Mechanical Engineering and Metalworking Industries in Latvia
  MWTUoL Metallurgic Workers’ Trade Union of Liepaja
Lithuania (LT) LDF Lithuanian Labour Federation
  LMPSS Union of Lithuania Metalworkers’ Trade Unions
  LPSK Lithuanian Trade Union Confederation
  MPPSS Union of Metal Industry Trade Unions
Luxembourg (LU) OGB-L Independent Trade Union Confederation of Luxembourg
  LCGB Luxembourg Christian Trade Union Confederation
Malta (MT) GWU General Workers’ Union
Netherlands (NL) CNV Bedrijvenbond Industry, Food and Transport Workers’ Union
  CNV Christian Trade Union Federation
  CMHF Federation of Intermediate and Higher Personnel
  De Unie Union of Intermediate and Higher Personnel
  FME-NCW Federation for the Metal and Electrical Industry – Contact Group of Employers in the Metal Industry
  FNV Dutch Trade Union Federation
  FNV Bondgenoten Federation of Dutch Trade Unions Allied Unions
  MHP Federation of Managerial and Professional Staff Unions
  VHP Corus Union for Higher Personnel at Corus
  VHP Metalektro Union for Higher Personnel in the Metal and Electrical Engineering Sector
  VNO-NCW Confederation of Netherlands Industries and Employers
Poland (PL) FZZ Trade Union Forum
  Metal FZZ All-Poland Association of Continuous Operation Employee Trade Unions – National Metalworking Section
  Metal NSZZ Solidarność National Metalworking Section – Metalworkers’ Secretariat of the Independent and Self-Governing Trade Union ‘Solidarity’
  Metal OPPZ Federation of Metalworking Trade Unions in Poland – All-Poland Alliance of Trade Unions
  Metal PZZ Kadra Metalworking Section of the KADRA Trade Union Agreement
  Metal ZZIT National Metalworking Section of the Trade Union of Engineers and Technicians
  NSZZ Solidarność Independent and Self-Governing Trade Union ‘Solidarity’
  OPZZ All-Poland Alliance of Trade Unions
  ZPPH Polish Steel Association
Portugal (PT) AIMMAP Association of Metal, Metalmechanic and Related Industries of Portugal
  CGTP-IN General Confederation of Portuguese Workers
  CIP Confederation of Portuguese Industry
  Fiequimetal Federation of Metalworking, Mining, Chemical, Pharmaceutical, Petroleum and Gas Workers’ Unions
  SIMA Union of Metal Industries and Correlative Industries and Services
  SINDEL National Industry and Energy Trade Union
  SITESE Union of Service Workers and Technicians
  STIMMN Union of Metal and Metal-Mechanic Workers of the North
  STIMMS Union of Metal and Metal-Mechanic Workers of the South
  UGT General Workers’ Confederation
Romania (RO) BNS National Trade Union Bloc
  Cartel Alfa National Trade Union Confederation ‘Cartel Alfa’
  CONPIROM Romanian Industry Employer Confederation
  FPM Metalurgia Employers’ Federation
  FSS Metarom Ferrous Metallurgy Trade Union Federation ‘Metarom’
  SMETAL FNS Solidaritatea Metal
  Uniromsider Steel Manufacturers’ Organisation
Slovakia (SK) KOZ SR Confederation of Trade Unions
  NKOS Independent Christian Trade Unions of Slovakia
  OZ KOVO Metal Trade Union Association
  OZ KOVO Metal Metal Trade Union Association KOVO
  OZ Metalurg Metallurgy Trade Union Association
  RUZ SR National Employer Association
  ZHŤPG SR Association of Employers in Metallurgy, the Mining Industry and Geology
Slovenia (SI) GZS Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia
  KNSS Independent Confederation of New Trade Unions of Slovenia
  KS90 Confederation of Trade Unions ‘90 of Slovenia
  NSS-SKI Independent Trade Union of Slovenia – Trade Union of the Metal Industry
  SKEI Trade Union of the Metal and Electro-industry of Slovenia
  SKEIE Trade Union of the Metal, Electro and Electronic Industry
  SKEM Metal, Electro and Metallurgy Industries Trade Union
  ZDS Slovenian Employers’ Association
  ZSSS Confederation of Free Trade Unions of Slovenia
Spain (ES) CC.OO Trade Union Confederation of Workers’ Commissions
  CC.OO-FM Trade Union Confederation of Workers’ Commissions – Federation of Mining and Metallurgy
  CEOE Spanish Federation of Employer Organisations
  CIG Inter-union Galician Confederation
  CIG Metal Inter-union Galician Confederation – Metal Federation
  ELA-STV Solidarity Federation of Basque Workers
  ELA-Metala Solidarity Federation of Basque Workers – Metal Federation
  LAB-FI LAB Industry Federation
  UGT General Workers’ Confederation
  MCA-UGT Metal, Construction and Allied Workers’ Federation –General Workers’ Confederation
  UNESID Association of Steel Companies
  USO Workers’ Trade Union Confederation
Sweden (SE) IF Metall Union of Metalworkers
  Jernkontoret Swedish Steel Producers’ Association
  LO Swedish Trade Union Confederation
  SACO Swedish Confederation of Professional Associations
  SI Swedish Association of Graduate Engineers
  SMA Steel and Metal Employers’ Association
  SN Confederation of Swedish Enterprises
  TCO Swedish Confederation of Professional Employees
  Unionen Union of White-collar Workers
United Kingdom (UK) Community General Trade Union
  STUC Scottish Trades Union Congress
  TUC Trades Union Congress
  UK Steel Trade Association for the UK Steel Industry
  Unite Unite the Union
Europe BWI Building and Wood Workers International
  CEC European Confederation of Executives and Managerial Staff
  CEEMET Council of European Employers of the Metal, Engineering and Technology-based Industries
  ECSC European Coal and Steel Community
  EEF Engineering Employers’ Federation
  EFBWW European Federation of Building and Woodworkers
  EFFAT European Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Trade Unions
  EICTA European Information, Communications and Consumer Electronics Industry Technology Association
  EMCEF European Mine, Chemical and Energy Workers’ Federation
  EMF European Metalworkers’ Federation
  EMU European Metal Union
  EPSU European Federation of Public Service Unions
  ESTA European Steel Tube Association
  ETF European Transport Workers’ Federation
  ETUF:TCL European Trade Union Federation: Textiles, Clothing and Leather
  Eurocadres Council of European Professional and Managerial Staff
  Eurofer European Confederation of Iron and Steel Industries
  EuroMetaux European Association of Metals
  Europump European Committee of Pump Manufacturers
  EURO-WEA European Workers’ Educational Association
  FEANI European Federation of National Engineering Associations
  FERPA European Federation of Retired and Older Persons
  ORGALIME European Engineering Industries’ Association
  SCECBU Standing Committee of European Central Bank Unions
  UNI-Europa Union Network International – Europe

Franz Traxler, Department of Industrial Sociology, University of Vienna


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