On 15 November 1918, he signed with the industrialist Hugo Stinnes the Stinnes-Legien Agreement, an agreement in which German employers accepted for the first time the federal trade unions as legitimate workers` organizations and created an eight-hour day, works councils in companies with more than 50 employees and joint employment agencies. The employers agreed to end discrimination against union members and their support for “domestic unions” (yellow unions), while the unions rejected the demands of radical socialists.    Most of the provisions of the agreement were part of the Weimar Constitution.  The reduction in tariff coverage has given rise to a political and academic debate on the future of the German tariff system and how best to deal with this decline, including through state intervention. For example, the DGB calls for the abolition of the so-called “OT” affiliation to employers` organisations (i.e.B affiliation that does not bind the employer to the sectoral collective agreement of his organisation). The Confederation of Trade Unions also proposes to use extension mechanisms more frequently. Employers` organisations such as the BDA reject requests for state intervention and stress the importance of independent (wage) negotiations. (8) Collective agreements are intended to set up conciliation bodies which will be composed equally of representatives of employers and workers. 12. Such contracts shall come into force on the day of their signature and, unless they are replaced by another Act, shall remain in force with three months` notice until further notice. The first two of them also prevented undertakings which were not bound by inter-trade agreements from joining collective agreements. In view of these results, the researchers consider that state intervention to strengthen the coverage of collective agreements is unfavourable, as the social partners do not seem to have exhausted from within all possibilities to strengthen the collective bargaining system.
More attractive wage and working time clauses could prove to be a good starting point, as companies still value collective agreements for their ability to ensure smooth production cycles or lower transaction costs. The debate on improving the coverage of the negotiations and the future cooperation of the social partners will continue in 2019, both of which are fundamental to Germany`s economic success. In October 2018, Deutsche Bahn (DB) began negotiations with the Locomotive Drivers` Union (GDL) and the Railway and Transport Union (TOE) for a new collective agreement that will affect around 160,000 employees. . . .