Last Wednesday, November 9, more than 15 000 steelmakers from nearly all the countries of the Old Continent came together to express their loud “NO to Europe without steel”. The demonstration through the streets of Brussels lasting the best part of three hours and conducted by the European labor union association IndustriAll called on the European Commission demanding that they put a stop once and for all time to the decline in the steel sector, which employs hundreds of thousands of people. Steelmakers from Košice were of course among them, including members of the KOVO U. S. Steel Košice Labor Union Council.
The situation which the European steel industry finds itself in demands resolute action, and that was their message to the politicians of the European Union. Even just seven years ago, before the financial crisis broke out, steelmaking provided a living to more than 400 000 people, while today that number is lower by 80 000. Steelmakers are afraid for their future, accusing the policy of austerity measures in Europe of suppressing growth and causing a drop in investments in research, development and plant modernization, and emphasizing once again the threat from the flow of cheap Chinese steel imports to the European markets.