Utility unions discuss coordination of collective bargaining

The trade unions discussed the challenges workers are facing in the utilities and what the implications are for collective bargaining and the coordination of collective bargaining. Issues related to the internal market and liberalisation, privatisation and restructuring were the main themes.
Companies that leave national collective agreements, outsourcing and off shoring, attacks on pension systems and pressure on wages were some of the problems discussed. Representatives discussed which strategies could be used
to confront these problems focusing in particular on the coordination of collective bargaining. Examples of coordination where given for the Visegrad countries, UK, Germany and the EWC of EDF. Several proposals were made which
will be further discussed in the Standing Committee Utilities (30 September).
The seminar was organised by the European Trade Union College and brought together unions from Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Slovakia, Slovenia and UK, 7-9 May 2004, Budapest.