bargaining is the best and most effective way to redistribute the wealth created in the economy

The conference – a ‘new start for collective bargaining’ – was organised by the ETUC and the Romanian European Council presidency in order to discuss the benefits for workers, the economy and society as a whole.

It comes ahead of the September launch of industriAll Europe’s ‘Together at Work’ campaign for collective bargaining.

At the event, the ITUC’s chief economist, Roland Janssen presented the contents a new leaflet developed in cooperation with industriAll Europe, which sets out how collective bargaining is essential for sharing economic prosperity equally and making society more democratic.

It explains: “Multi-employer bargaining is the best and most effective way to redistribute the wealth created in the economy. It helps countries tackle excessive inequality by preventing wage competition from driving down salaries within the sector.

“Moreover, experience shows that multi-employer systems with higher collective bargaining coverage better prevent in-work poverty and gender pay gap while promoting higher employment rates and participation of most vulnerable groups in the labour market.”

The leaflet also sets out the benefits of collective bargaining for employers, adding: 

“Multi-employer bargaining allows bargaining in a professional and cost-effective way. Instead of negotiations in each individual business, bargaining can be done by skilled and experienced sector-level teams of negotiators.

“Thus, realising tangible savings, especially for SMEs which in many most EU countries represent the large majority. Multi-employer bargaining helps build social trust and more stable relations between business and labour. It does so by setting generally acceptable fair pay standards and by keeping potentially tense and conflictual discussions and negotiations out of the workplace.”

industriAll Europe will set out these arguments to workers, employers and policy makers between September and March 2020.

 You can read more about the campaign here: