Norske Skog signs global labour deal

The agreement will ensure any employee within the group anywhere in the world basic rights as defined by the international workers union ICEM. It will among other ensure the right to establish unions, the right to collective negotiations with the management, obligations for the management to inform the workers as well as maintant certain standards for health, environment and security.
Norske Skog employes around 11,000 people, half of them in Europe. The effect of the agreement is mainly to be seen in countries with weaker unions like China, Brasil, Chile, Malaysia amd Thailand.
The agreement is signed between CEO Jan Reinås, the Norwegian union leader Kjell Bj?rndalen and the ICEM General Secretary Fred Higgs. It is the first of its kind within the paper, pulp and wood working industry. According to Higgs, he is proud to have been able to enter such an agreement with Noske Skog which is the second largest paper manufacturer world wide with full or part ownership of 24 factories around the globe.
“In some parts of the world it is not customary that the rights of the workers are as well regulated through laws and agreements as we know in Norway,” Kjell Bjørndalen noted at the signing.
The agreement is a milestone for the building pressure in Norway like elsewhere in Europe to comply with certain high ethic standards. Within the same company, treating workers in Asia differently from workers in Europe is seen as unethical behavior.

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