Sectoral Social Dialogue in the European Steel Industry

Social Dialogue

European social dialogue is a unique and indispensable component of the European social model, with a clearly defined basis in the EC Treaty. It refers to the discussions, consultations, negotiations, and joint actions undertaken by the social partner organisations representing the two sides of industry (management and labour).

For further information on European Social Dialogue, see the European Commission DG Employment and Social Affairs website

Sectoral Social Dialogue in the Steel Industry

In conformity with the Amsterdam Treaty, in particular Article 138, and with reference to the Commission Decision COM (1998)322final the European social partners in the steel industry – the European Metalworkers' Federation (EMF) and the European Steel Association (EUROFER) have decided to conduct an autonomous social dialogue within the framework of a sectoral social dialogue committee under the auspices of the European Commission. By engaging in a social dialogue at EU level both organisations want to contribute to the viability and perspectives of the European sector, supporting competitiveness and a high degree of employment with high quality jobs.

Rules of procedure for the European Sectoral Social Dialogue Committee in the steel sector:

Objectives and Work programme

The social dialogue committee pursues the following objectives:

  • On the basis of its work programme, the sectoral social dialogue committee should conduct exchanges on topics of mutual interest and should develop the capacity for subsequent joint action.
  • On the basis of its expertise it should develop concepts and proposals to influence European and national debates and it should give directions and recommendations in order to contribute to policy developments both at the national and European level. The social dialogue committee should monitor the implementation of its joint opinions, guidelines and recommendations.
  • The scope of the committee's activities should range from bilateral projects with the support of the European Commission, and three-way exchanges of information with the European Commission, to consultations to develop common positions and actions, in particular, vis-a-vis the European institutions.
  • The social dialogue committee should monitor the social, economic and employment consequences of EU policies on the steel sector.
  • It should promote and monitor the implementation at the national level of the results of the European level social dialogue.
  • The social partners may decide to embody the results of their dialogue into European agreement.

In the framework of the above-mentioned objectives the European social partners in the steel industry propose the following work programme:

  • Health and Safety: Foster permanent progress, in particular, through the exchange of best practices;
  • Evolution of training needs and tools in the context of remarkable demographic changes and of competition for highly skilled workers with other industries;
  • Monitoring and evaluation of the structural changes within European and Global steel industry;
  • Development of joint policy statements (on issues like energy, the environment and raw material policy) vis-a-vis European institutions and joint participation in the consultation process on EU regulation concerning the steel industry.

EUROFER-EMF Work Programme of the Social Dialogue Committee in the European steel industry 2009-2010


Structure and Organisation of Social Dialogue

Working Groups :

  • Health and Safety :

    To focus on health and safety in the EU Steel Industry through exchange of best practices and develop a global overview on EU policy and legislation in this domain in order to promote the highest standard in terms of health and safety at work.

  • Structural Change in the EU Steel Industry :

    To monitor the structural evolutions of the steel industry in Europe and Worldwide as well as their potential quantitative and qualitative impact on employment.

  • Training and Life Long Learning :

    Special attention on the anticipation of skills needed in the sector, recruitment, retention and workforce development. In 2010, a EMF-EUROFER joint project was launched on the possible setting up of a European Sector Council on Jobs and Employment for the steel industry.

    Moreover, EUROFER and EMF work in close co-operation with ESTEP (WG5) in order to promote Training and Life Long Learning in the Steel Industry. The ambition of the WG5 is to hire and retain skilled people in the steel sector to keep its leadership in the long term. The main committed topics are:

    • Hire talented people
    • Adapt skills and capabilities to the new technological world
    • Develop life-long learning and in particular e-learning

    For further information, please see ESTEP website

EMF-EUROFER Joint Positions

EMF-EUROFER Joint Statement on the Commission proposal for the revision of the EU Emissions Trading System (EU-ETS)

EU metalworkers and employers join forces for a more sustainable EU climate change policy

The European Steel Association (EUROFER AISBL)

Avenue de Cortenbergh, 172
B-1000 Brussels

Tel.: +32 2 738 79 20
Fax.: +32 2 738 79 55