The International Metalworkers' Federation (IMF) is representing workers, both blue- and white-collar, in industries such as steel, non-ferrous metals and ore mining, mechanical engineering, shipbuilding, automobile, aerospace, electrical and electronics.
By using modern communication technology, the IMF keeps abreast of developments in the metal industry, servicing its member unions by research on economic and social issues, providing educational background and fighting for trade union and human rights particularly in the metal industry.
In addition to organising industrial and regional conferences, the IMF brings together trade union representatives to discuss international union policy on subjects such as working time and new work organisation, new technology, industrial democracy and workplace health and safety.
Since the last decade, the IMF, jointly with its affiliated unions, has increasingly organised meetings of World Company Councils, bringing together workers from the same company employed in different countries.
The IMF also presents the metalworkers' case in bodies such as the ILO, the OECD and various United Nations agencies, as well as in discussions with officials of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
The focus of IMF activities is determined by the Action Programme adopted at the IMF's 31st World Congress, in Vienna in 2005, in which a strategy was drawn up for, among other priorities:
Building a global metalworkers' movement
Dealing with transnational corporations
- organising the unorganised
- giving international solidarity more impetus
Implementing countervailing union power
- negotiating international framework agreements
- creating new information strategies
- developing an alternative economic programme
- securing workers' rights
- ensuring that economic development is sustainable.