Attractions for Industry

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Attractions for Industry

Attractions for Industry

Large multinational firms have also been attracted to the country in recent years by the low strike record of the labour force. There were only two strikes in 1982, the second lowest total in Europe after Switzerland. The large firms, such as General Motors and Philips, frequently supply parts to the West German economy rather than build complete assemblies in Austria.

Unemployment is very low compared with other Western European countries and, standing at 3.7 per cent, it is bettered only by Switzerland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. This has been achieved partly because the working week is slightly shorter than elsewhere: an average of 36-37 hours.

Despite the modernity of Austria's industries, the attachment to local customs is still strong. In the rural areas, men commonly wear lederhosen and jackets or capes made of a woolen material (loden). Women's regional costumes - including the full-skirted, tight-bodiced dress known as the dirndl - can still be seen on feastdays and holidays.

Next: Influence of the Church

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