The Finnish Industrial Union and Technology Industries of Finland on Monday announced they have agreed on a new collective agreement, setting the tone for the series of bargaining negotiations taking place in the months to come.
Riku Aalto, the chairperson of the Finnish Industrial Union, characterised the agreement as a fine compromise.
“[An agreement] is good when it stings everyone a bit,” he commented to Uusi Suomi.
The collective agreement guarantees that the wages of the almost 100,000 people employed in the metals and technology industries will increase by two per cent over the next two years – by 1.1 per cent in 2018 and 0.9 per cent in 2019. It also stipulates, however, that wage increases should primarily be agreed upon locally based on the circumstances of each business.
If no local agreement is found, the general increases will be supplemented with a business-specific increase of 0.5 per cent in 2018 and one of 0.7 per cent in 2019. The wages would consequently creep up by a total of 3.2 per cent over the next two years.
“But you can agree on anything locally, also on lower wages, depending on how the order books and employment situation look,” reminded Aalto.
He also admitted that the collective agreement may come as a disappointment to some employees due to the solid growth experienced recently by many businesses in the industries.
“I hope it gets a good reception. It may be a disappointment to some with the sector doing better and employment being on the rise. It may be just right for others depending on the situation,” he said before reminding of the possibility to determine wage increases locally.
Eeva-Liisa Inkeroinen, the deputy chief executive of the Technology Industries of Finland, estimated in a press release that the agreement is valuable in that it promotes the development of local bargaining and, according to estimates, improves the competitiveness of businesses in the industry.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Martti Kainulainen – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi