Trade Union News from Finland

| Start | Archive | Newsletter | Links | Publisher | About | Copyright


valikko


JUHANI ARTTO
HOMEPAGE 2013

HAKU / SEARCH

GALLERIA / GALLERY

TRADE UNION NEWS
FROM FINLAND 1997-2013

AY-UUTISET
MAAILMALTA 1999-2013

KOHTI KUMPPANUUTTA
- KUINKA SUOMI
OPPI TEKEMÄÄN
KEHITYSYHTEISTYÖTÄ
1965-2005

KAIKKI PELISSÄ -
SÄHKÖISET LISÄSIVUT

EVERYTHING AT STAKE - SAFEGUARDING INTERESTS IN A WORLD WITHOUT FRONTIERS

MEDIALINNAKKEET

BOLIVIA

HAITI

MUUT JUTUT
OTHER STORIES

INTERNET -
TIEDONHAUN OPAS 2.0

SUITSAIT

MUILLA SAITEILLA
ON OTHER SITES

LINKIT / LINKS

JULKAISIJA / PUBLISHER

© JUHANI ARTTO
1997-2013

juttupohja_4
Mass redundancies and scare tactics colour
the start of the new round of collective bargaining


Helsinki (01.09.2011 - Juhani Artto) The summer vacations are now over and labour market organizations are sharpening their weapons for the new round of collective bargaining. Naturally, the employers are trying to take advantage of the uncertain economic outlook by painting the future with dark colours and more ominously by also announcing drastic redundancies. On the other side of the battlefield trade unions are doing their utmost to encourage their rank and file members by drawing on data that throw serious doubt on the signals being sent out by employers.

Further aggravation was to follow. In the technology industry this kind of debate was aggravated on Monday when union organizations published a survey based on replies given by 1,250 shop stewards representing all employee groups. According to the replies companies generally fare well and much better than what the employers have claimed in recent weeks. The survey was made by the Metalworkers' Union, the salaried employees union Pro and the Federation of Professional and Managerial Staff YTN.

The union organizations label the pessimistic announcements of the employer side as "mainly tactical preparation for the collective bargaining in this autumn". Two thirds of the shop stewards regard technology industry's future as good.

Collective bargaining is also beginning in the banking sector. The expiratory agreements cover some 20,000 employees. On Monday the whole sector was stunned when the Nordic bank Nordea announced its plan to cut 2,000 jobs over the next year. And a third of these job losses will be in Finland.

The announcement came as a big surprise to employees who have successfully worked hard to make the bank highly profitable. Nordea argues that these steps are justified. The bank says that drastic cuts have something to do with the remote future whereby the EU's new regulations (New Normal) cause additional costs to banks. Collective bargaining in the banking sector begins on September 1.

On Wednesday, news of yet more inevitable mass redundancies still worsened the already difficult bargaining situation. The forest industry company UPM said that it plans to shut down Myllykoski paper mill that it bought late last year. The mill employs almost 400 people. UPM's plans, announced on Wednesday, endanger 1,170 jobs in Finland, Germany and France altogether.

"The announcement realises our worst fears", Petri Vanhala, the President of the Paperworkers' Union comments. Antti Rinne, the President of Pro, insists on a thorough investigation as to why this decision was taken and promises alternatives that would mean a continuation of the production.

Nordea's and UPM's bad news this week have really angered union leaders. Especially the role of Björn Wahlroos has been questioned as he chairs the boards of both Nordea and UPM.