Greece, Italy, Spain & Portugal Industry

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  • CCOOMMPPAARRAATTIIVVEE AANNAALLYYSSIISS OOFF TTHHEE LLEEAATTHHEERR AANNDD FFOOOOTTWWEEAARR IINNDDUUSSTTRRIIEESS CCOONNCCEERRNNIINNGG AAGGEEDD WWOORRKKEERRSS IINN GGRREEEECCEE,, IITTAALLYY,, SSPPAAIINN && PPOORRTTUUGGAALL

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    CCOOMMPPAARRAATTIIVVEE AANNAALLYYSSIISS OOFF TTHHEE LLEEAATTHHEERR AANNDD

    FFOOOOTTWWEEAARR IINNDDUUSSTTRRIIEESS CCOONNCCEERRNNIINNGG AAGGEEDD

    WWOORRKKEERRSS IINN GGRREEEECCEE,, IITTAALLYY,, SSPPAAIINN && PPOORRTTUUGGAALL

    PIRAEUS

    ATHENS, 2007

    European Union European Social Funds

    Article 6 Innovative Measures

  • CCOOMMPPAARRAATTIIVVEE AANNAALLYYSSIISS OOFF TTHHEE LLEEAATTHHEERR AANNDD FFOOOOTTWWEEAARR IINNDDUUSSTTRRIIEESS CCOONNCCEERRNNIINNGG AAGGEEDD WWOORRKKEERRSS IINN GGRREEEECCEE,, IITTAALLYY,, SSPPAAIINN && PPOORRTTUUGGAALL

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    TABLE OF CONTENT

    1. INTRODUCTION.........................................................................................................3

    2. EMPLOYMENT AND MODERN LABOR MARKET ...............................................6

    3. EMPLOYMENT AND UNEMPLOYMENT IN THE EUROPEAN

    ENVIRONMENT........................................................................................................10

    4. DEMOGRAPHIC PROBLEM & EMPLOYMENT IN THE EU.............................16

    5. THE LEATHER AND FOOTWEAR INDUSTRY IN THE SOUTH EU

    COUNTRIES...............................................................................................................18

    Leather and footwear industry in Greece................................................................18

    5.1.1. Leather sector ..............................................................................................18

    5.1.2. Footwear Sector...........................................................................................21

    The leather and Footwear Industry in Italy............................................................25

    The leather and footwear industry in Portugal.......................................................28

    The leather and Footwear Industry in Spain ..........................................................33

    6. COMPARATIVE ANALYSIS ....................................................................................41

    Common characteristics in the four south EU countries .......................................41

    Critical differences in the South EU countries........................................................44

    7. CONSTRAINTS ANALYSIS OF CONSTRAINTS................................................45

    8. CONCLUSIONS .........................................................................................................49

    9. LITERATURE - REFERENCES...............................................................................51

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    11.. IINNTTRROODDUUCCTTIIOONN The present study is carried out in the framework of the ACTION LINC project

    (Action for Leather Integrated Co-operation) which is co-financed by the European

    Social Fund (in the framework of Article 6) .

    The projects goal is to design and implement a employment management strategy for

    aged workers in the production field of the leather and footwear industry in four

    countries in the South of Europe (Greece, Italy, Spain and Portugal) where there are

    significant employability problems. The project focuses on the implementation of

    innovative human resources management methods in order to deal with the problems

    generated during the past years due to the rapidly changing environment.

    The comparative study of the labor market in terms of aged workers in Greece, Italy,

    Spain and Portugal is a deliverable of the first stage of ACTION LINC and is the

    continuation of the field studies and researches that were carried out in all

    aforementioned countries. The Comparative Analysis is based on the data of the

    results of the National studies that were carried out in the framework of the project

    and its goal is to highlight the common features, problems and needs of the Labor

    Market in the Leather Footwear Industry focusing on aged workers.

    With regard to the implementation of the study we must take into account the

    following points, which highlight the multifarious and complex character of

    Employment and in particular of aged workers.

    Employment in modern economies is identical to economic growth. In the developing

    economies (and not only) the sectors that have positive development indexes are

    naturally those that generate new jobs and contribute in terms of Employment.

    The globalized economy has create a new situation both in terms of economy and in

    terms of labor market and Enterprises are obliged to adapt themselves according to

    this new environment so as to ensure their feasibility and further development.. As a

    result needs in terms of human resources focuses on well trained personnel in a

    modern business and economic environment.

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    Globalization has as well another influence, namely the fact that enterprises relocate

    their production in low cost countries (mainly due to the low labor cost). As a result

    there has been a strong de-industrialization and loss of jobs in the production field in

    the developed and the developing EU countries.

    The modern digital technology constitutes on the one hand a pole for the development

    of new quality products and for a more effective organization of the production and

    on the other hand it has changed the requirements of the labor market. The

    requirements in terms of Human Resources focus on technologically specialized jobs

    whereas low specialization jobs gradually disappear or are covered by financial

    refugees or by flexible form of employment.

    The financial refugees have greatly changed the labor market and in particular

    immigrants from Eastern European countries have influenced a lot the environment in

    all European countries. The flow of immigrants has dramatically changed the labor

    market map in all hosting countries.

    The numerous products, which due to the globalization come from countries, such as

    China, India, Korea of low labor cost and as a result of low production cost made

    competition for European products in the International and domestic markets even

    harder.

    The present study investigates the Leather and Footwear Industry in four countries

    (Greece, Italy, Spain, Portugal) in relation to:

    ) The existing situation

    ) The Human Resources Employment

    C) the perspectives for further development concerning both the financial volumes an

    the Employment itself.

    D) The identification of practices that could lead to further growth and development.

    The comparative analysis was based on field research and studies that have been

    carried out in the framework of the ACTION LINC project in four countries in the

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    South of the European Union (Greece, Italy, Spain and Portugal). The data and

    conclusions that are included in the Study and are relevant tot the labor markets and

    the situation of the industry are taken from similar research and studies.

    The present study is divided in an introduction and seven individual sections:

    The second (introductory) section presents the basic concepts with regard to

    employment and unemployment together with a brief presentation of the prevailing

    trends relevant to the problem. The third section presents a draft of the existing

    situation in the labor market of the industry under investigation, its structure and

    employment features as well as the policies applied in the EU for the unemployment

    focusing mainly on aged workers. The fourth section presents the demographic

    problem in the economically active EU population, the practices that have been

    applied until today in most EU countries as well as a forecast for the years to come.

    The fifth section presents the characteristics of the leather footwear industry in

    Greece, Italy, Spain and Portugal as reflected on the national field studies that were

    carried out in the framework of the project. Moreover the SWOT technique was

    applied for the centralized presentation of opportunities, weaknesses, perspectives and

    menaces of the industry in the four countries under investigation in the present

    project.

    The sixth and the seventh section presents the common characteristics, the problems

    and the needs in the four countries as well as their differences. Moreover constraints

    are determined so that they are dealt in a way to create more favorable conditions for

    aged workers in the leather footwear industry. Last but not