Almost all activities of the FES TU Competence Centre for Sub Sahara Africa are in need of intense background research. Hence, we work together with the Cape Town based Labour Research Service (LRS). LRS started in 1986 as a non-profit labour service organisation. The organisation specialises in research, dialogue-building, and developmental projects with the broad aim of strengthening civil society and a particular focus on the world of work. The FES TU Competence Centre has built a strong and professional working relationship with LRS on a wide range of diverse projects. Particularly the background research to several SA MNCs like Shoprite, Pick n’ Pay, Massmart and AngloGold Ashanti (AGA) were and are the foundation for successful negotiations for a GFA. Moreover FES supports LRS’s work in the process of building databases about South African MNCs for GUFs and their affiliates as well as a mapping project of mines in the SADC region with the particular aim of strengthening organising and bargaining strategies, cross border links and solidarity between trade unions in SADC organising the mines. A further database on energy companies in the SADC Region has been developed to support particularly the work of the Southern African Energy Network (SAEN).