The background against which the ERT was formed was that of the crisis of European order as analysed in the preceding chapter. When integration was at a low-point in the early 1980s and growing global competition threatened the position of large sections of European industry, leading members of Europe’s business community such as Pehr Gyllenhammar of Volvo, Umberto Agnelli of Fiat and Wisse Dekker of Philips, began to perceive the need for a European-level political initiative to recover from this European decline. In their view, what Europe first of all needed was a move to the ‘European scale in industrial and market development’, which, as we shall see in chapter 4, above all meant the creation of a unified European home market. Such an initiative was not forthcoming from Europe’s politicians, who still seemed to be trapped in the dominant ‘Europessimism’ mood. Europe’s industrialists thus realised that it was up to themselves to launch such a new political initiative (see Cowles 1994: 210-11), and, moreover, that they could not do this through the established European business associations, in particular the Union of Industrial and Employers Confederations of Europe (UNICE) – the ‘official voice’ of European industry – which was at that time considered to be rather ineffective (see below).