Negotiators sign new EWC agreement Gdf-Suez

{(6 May 2009)} The Members of the Special Negotiating Body will sign the EWC agreement for the French-Belgian company GdF-Suez today 6 May in Paris. The SNB reached [agreement with management 7 April->art4896]. Following the merger of GDF and SUEZ, the European Works Councils (EWC) of both companies agreed to negotiate a new EWC agreement basing itself on the experience of both EWCs. The negotiations took a good 7 months to complete. The result takes account of the changes to the EWC Directive and set a benchmark for other companies and EWCs. Noteworthy are the issues considered transnational, the scope of the companies and the manner of consultation of the EWC. The new GDF SUEZ EWC will be composed of 65 members plus two guests from European industry federations. The EWC will meet twice a year. A select committee of 14 members meets once a month. Six permanent working groups will be established for 3 social domains and 3 activity domains. These working groups will meet twice a year. Just like the EWC they can invite experts. It also lays down a number of resources for the EWC such as use of experts, training (5 days a year), administrative support and an own budget of 80,000 euros a year with all costs for EWC meetings being carried by the company. EPSU's Deputy General Secretary participated in the negotiations and will sign the agreement together with the SNB members. The agreement will be considered by the [EPSU EWC Coordinators meeting 13 May->art4530]. Press release of the SNB: EN / FR / NL/ DE/ ES/ SV/ NO/ IT / CZ / HU / PL / RO