President Klaus Iohannis pledged to mediate the social conflict between trade unions and the employers’ associations over workforce legislation. Following the meeting with the trade union leaders on Thursday, the Romanian head of state informed he would schedule meeting with all social actors involved in key sectors in the upcoming period, arguing “a real, strong social dialogue is needed among these actors.”
“President Iohannis assessed that the trade unions play a very important part in the Romanian society and that these consultations represent a first step forward to a real dialogue, and not a formal one, which should solve the problems that the economic sector is presently facing, including the public administration, healthcare or education systems,” reads a press release of the Presidential Administration.
According to the above-mentioned source, the trade unions’ representatives called for a higher law stability regarding the labour market and also for a responsible social dialogue.
At the same time, the representatives of the trade union confederations expressed their discontent regarding the fact the right of collective negotiation and the right of strike are currently restricted and conditioned.
Leader of Cartel Alfa Trade Union Confederation, Bogdan Hossu said after meeting the President that a meeting with the employers’ association and one with the academic world would follow on.
Hossu complained that, at present, the collective contracts of employment are blocked, stressing that a dialogue under President Iohannis’ mediation should take place involving trade unions and employers’ associations to reach a national consensus.
“We undergo talks with part of the employers’ confederations. Today, no employers’ confederation is meeting the requirement of representing half plus one of the employees (…) It is also required in Romania, which is unique in the EU, that a trade union organization should be set up only of 15 employees of the same unit. It is discriminating for the small-sized enterprises, which are holding 35 percent of the total of the employees in this sector,” Hossu said.