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The emergence of the 'coastal steelworks' in the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC), 1952-1967

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  • Eline POELMANS

Abstract

The coal and steel production was key in the post-war rebuilding of the European economy. However, after WWII, Germany still had the technological knowledge and experience to quickly regain its pre-war position as the dominant economic force in Europe. In response to this ‘problem’, the political leaders of six Western European countries founded the European Coal and Steel Community or ECSC, which they hoped would provide a common legal framework for the coal and steel industry. When the ECSC was founded, all six founding countries of the ECSC produced steel and all but two also produced substantial quantities of coal. However, there were considerable differences in the ‘regional concentration’ of the coal and steel companies and before 1952 (the first year of the ECSC), a (relatively) small geographical area was responsible for more than 90 % of both the European coal and steel production. We have then looked at how the relative importance of this ‘industrial triangle’ in the total coal and steel production of the ECSC has decreased between 1952 and 1967 and we discuss the different causes of this decrease. More specifically, we show how the importance of the so-called ‘coastal steelworks’ has increased between 1952 and 1967.

Suggested Citation

  • Eline POELMANS, 2009. "The emergence of the 'coastal steelworks' in the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC), 1952-1967," Working Papers Department of Economics ces09.07, KU Leuven, Faculty of Economics and Business, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:ete:ceswps:ces09.07
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    ECSC; regional concentration; coastal steelworks; industrial triangle;

    JEL classification:

    • L7 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Primary Products and Construction
    • M21 - Business Administration and Business Economics; Marketing; Accounting; Personnel Economics - - Business Economics - - - Business Economics
    • N54 - Economic History - - Agriculture, Natural Resources, Environment and Extractive Industries - - - Europe: 1913-
    • N64 - Economic History - - Manufacturing and Construction - - - Europe: 1913-
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes

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