The Finnish Commerce Federation laments the break in negotiations – collective agreement must answer to challenges posed by the transformation of commerce
The Finnish Commerce Federation finds it very lamentable that the Service Union United PAM has broken off the negotiations over the Collective Agreement for the Commercial Sector, and announced an overtime prohibition and work stoppage. Commerce is tied with the export-focused labour market model that is important for Finland and for the sector’s capability to employ.
On Friday 31 January, Service Union United PAM broke off negotiations over the Collective Agreement for the Commercial Sector. Today, PAM announced overtime prohibition and work stoppage, which will be implemented as strikes and a prohibition of treatment. The overtime prohibition will start on Tuesday 4 February at 6:00 a.m. and it includes many types of work covered by the Collective Agreement for the Commercial Sector in several companies.
The Finnish Commerce Federation finds the situation very lamentable. “We hoped that we could continue the negotiations very soon because differences of opinion can only be solved by negotiating. In fact, we got quite far in negotiations over issues that are important for both parties,” says Anna Lavikkala, Labour Market Director of the Finnish Commerce Federation.
“The Finnish Commerce Federation wants to strengthen local agreeing, but commerce is also tied to the export-focused model that is important for all of Finland. The export-focused model sets us an expense ceiling,” she says.
“In terms of national economy, it is important to ensure that commerce will remain the largest employer in the economy. In addition, we must make sure that costs do not indirectly rise for export companies as they use services of the commerce sector,” says Lavikkala.
“The goal of the Finnish Commerce Federation is to negotiate a modern collective agreement that strengthens competitiveness and takes into consideration the diverse field and enables stores that operate in Finland to succeed and employ.
“Digitalisation, automation and international competition are constantly changing the labour market and skill requirement in the commerce sector. The collective agreement must respond to modern-day challenges in order for Finnish commerce to continue to do well,” Anna Lavikkala sums up.
The Collective Agreement for the Commercial Sector ended on 31 January 2020. Regardless of the expiry of the collective agreement, companies will apply the provisions of the old collective agreement until such a time that an agreement over a new collective agreement is reached.
For further information please see the Negotiating World.