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ETF at ETUC 15th Congress | We are proud of the ETF delegation’s good work and solid representation at the ETUC 15th Congress in Berlin|Germany.

  • The ETF delegation submitted an emergency motion in support of the French rail workers opposing the attacks on French state-owned rail freight operator SNCF Fret under the EC’s investigation for previous state aid. The motion got the full support of the delegates at the ETUC Congress.
  • The ETF President, Frank Moreels, ETF GS, Livia Spera and the ETF Youth Committee co-chair, Celine Ruffié, addressed the Congress.
  • The ETF GS, Livia Spera, had interesting exchanges with young European workers as part of the “Power to Union Youth!” debate.

ETF SG, Livia Spera’s visit to Ireland|

  • She participated at the Fórsa SED conference in Cork, where she shared the ETF’s commitments to place transport workers at the centre of transport policy and to continue our fight against the far right.
  • She met with Members of the Houses of the Oireachtas & discussed with members of the Sinn Féin Ireland and Labour Party about priorities for EU transport workers and the upcoming European elections;
  • She discussed with leaders from SIPTU and Fórsa Trade Union about issues facing Irish transport workers and how to strengthen our cooperation.

The ETF GS chaired the joint ETF Maritime Transport and Dockers Steering Committees’ meeting, the two ETF sections organised in London with the occasion of the ITF Seafarers and Dockers Section meetings. She underlined the importance of strengthening the two sections’ cooperation and working more together in areas of common interest in a coordinated way. Key common priorities of the two sectors were identified to be included in an Action Plan for implementation.

At the European Seaports Organisation (ESPO) Conference 2023 in Bremen, Livia Spera took part in a fireside chat with Ulrike RIEDEL, Labor Relations Director at BLG Logistics Group, on the future workforce in ports. ETF SG pointed out the crucial role of the social dimension in shaping the future of ports while emphasising that occupational health and safety, training and up-skilling remain the “red thread” in the sector.

NTF Congress 2023| ETF President Frank Moreels & ETF Deputy SG, Sabine Trier, attended the 17th Nordic Transport Workers’ Federation Congress in Helsinki. Addressing Congress, the ETF President expressed his deep concern about the rise of the far right in Europe and insisted on safeguarding trade unions and women’s rights. Congratulations to the newly elected NTF President, Ismo Kokko| AKT liitto.

8 May| This V-E Day, we honoured the bravery of workers who fought and sacrificed their lives to defeat fascism. To remember them, ETF advocates for the 8 May Day to become a Europe-wide bank holiday.

IDAHOBIT|On International Day Against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia, we joined our unions Vida|Austria, EVG & Ver.di|Germany in calling for equality and inclusivity via the ratification of ILO Convention 190 and adoption of the anti-discrimination EU Directive.



Sustainable waterborne transport| We concluded in May the ETF cross-sector project on fair and sustainable waterborne transport in Europe by launching its final “Waterborne Employment and Governance”. The report’s findings and recommendations are set to play a significant role in guiding future policies and initiatives.

IDWM2023| May 18th, the International Day for Women in Maritime, was not just a day to celebrate the work and leadership of women trade unionists across the sector but also an opportunity to ask for more & faster progress towards equality. And this means that the industry must ensure decent jobs and better living & working conditions on board.

Skill Sea Project| The launch of the MET network and the signing of a memorandum of understanding were the last actions taken in the framework of the EU-funded SkillSea project, where ETF is a partner. Speaking at the closing conference of the project, the chair of ETF MT Section EU Committee, Sascha Meijer, underlined that future training and retraining opportunities should be at no cost for seafarers and the perspectives of lifetime-long careers are deriving from the capacity of the industry to ensure decent, attractive & highly skilled jobs for seafarers. All deliverables of the project are available here.

Upcoming events:
European Shipping Summit 2023 –19-20 September 2023 – Brussels| BE



Women in Port| Bera Tommasi, ETF Policy Officer for Dockers, was a speaker at one of the round tables organised in the framework of the conference “Women in the port and maritime sector, why not?” focusing on the role of women in the port and maritime community and how to close the existing gender gap.
The international conference in Livorno on May 18th was the culminating event of a vast project launched by the Municipality of Livorno in cooperation with many stakeholders from the port and maritime sectors, aimed at promoting the presence of women workers and improving their working conditions.



ETF Fisheries Week| Fishers’ unions across Europe mobilised in May to defend their sector! They answer our call for a week of actions – between 2 and 9 May – aiming to draw attention to the socio-economic risks the industry is exposed to due to the recently adopted EU Action Plan.

  • The ETF GS, Livia Spera, explained in a video why the European fishers’ voices must be listened to;
  • In a Manifesto, we presented the catastrophic socio-economic impact on the sector once this action plan is implemented;
  • From Italy to France and Spain, our fishers joined forces and asked for EU rules allowing them to maintain their jobs;
  • In a joint press release on Europe Day, ETF, EBFA, Europêche, EAPO and Cogeca warned the EU authorities that bottom fishing is on the brink of collapse and asked for realistic measures to save the sector;
  • Throughout the week of actions, the European fishers had the same message: as the True Guardians of the Sea, fishers must be protected and must be at the centre of all EU decisions impacting the fisheries sector;
  • Our video presents all actions the European fishers took throughout ETF Fisheries Week.

Blue skills & jobs conference| At the LegaCoop Agrolimentare conference on blue skills & jobs in Rome, Andrea Albertazzi, ETF Policy Officer for Fisheries, presented the priorities of the European Fisheries Social Dialogue Committee.

Sustainable fishing industry | Fruitful discussions between ETF and Europêche in Brest| France in the framework of the ‘Pillars of the Sea 3’ project. It is expected to deliver practical solutions primarily for the social issues the sector is facing—more info here.


ETF Conference ‘What future for fishers in the Mediterranean?’ – 30 June – Brussels|Belgium