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26/03/2018

IMF highlights absence of convergence in the Eurozone

Euro convergence

The economic convergence envisaged by the founders of the eurozone has not happened and Europe’s economies risk growing further apart unless a raft of reforms are implemented, the IMF’s Europe Director told an audience at the ETUI’s Monthly Forum on 22nd March. The IMF’s stance on the growing disparities in the eurozone echoes key findings of the ETUI’s Benchmarking Working Europe 2018 report released in the same week.

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22/03/2018

Benchmarking Working Europe 2018: trade unions call for tangible progress on social issues before the next European elections

On 19 March 2018, a debate – organised by the European Trade Union Institute (ETUI) and hosted by the Brussels-based Permanent Representation of Austria to the EU – was held to mark the publication of the 2018 Benchmarking Working Europe report. Organisations represented at this debate included the ETUI, the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC), the European Commission and the European Parliament, and several speakers stressed the need to achieve tangible progress on social issues before the next European elections.

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22/03/2018

Military Trade Unionism in Europe

euromil

EUROMIL, the European Organisation of Military Associations, together with the ETUI, organised a lunch debate on “Military Trade Unionism in Europe” on 21 March 2018. Peter Scherrer, ETUC Deputy General Secretary, opened the debate by stating that the right of workers to have their voices heard, the right to form and join trade unions is a fundamental right. One important group of workers however is often forgotten and still today in many countries struggles to have its rights respected: the military personnel.

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21/03/2018

Modest increases in minimum wages in the European Union

In early 2018, the legal minimum wage experienced a median increase of 4.4% in the EU Member States. Taking into account inflation, this increase is limited to 2.8%. These figures are taken from a report by the Institute of Economic and Social Research (WSI) of the Hans-Böckler Foundation, an organization accountable to the German trade union movement. The report is based on the WSI Minimum Wage Database which offers a comprehensive analysis of current minimum wage developments in Europe and beyond.

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15/03/2018

EU: income convergence and inequality

Research on economic integration and convergence reveals that the financial and economic crisis has had a huge impact on the existing EU-wide inequality. Growth in household incomes and convergence up until 2008 was followed by years of stagnation. As a consequence, the wage gap between western Europe and the new EU Central and Eastern European Member States persisted. The ETUC stated that it is necessary to keep the EU economic policy-making moving in a more progressive direction.

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15/03/2018

The European Labour Authority will have to tackle social dumping, according to the European unions

The European Trade Union movement has cautiously welcomed the setting up by 2019 of a European Labour Authority (ELA).

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9/03/2018

The doughnut revolution as an alternative to the growth paradigm

Could the ring doughnut, one of America’s most famous sweet snacks, hold the answer to the problem of transitioning to a sustainable and fair economy? Yes, according to a growing number of English-speaking alter-globalists and environmental activists, whose views are explained in a book published in April 2017 (Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st-Century Economist). Given that almost 200 people attended an event held to discuss the topic in Brussels on 6 March which was jointly organised by the ETUI and the Flemish organisation Arbeid&Milieu, the idea is perhaps not as bizarre as it first sounds.

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8/03/2018

Working time reduction back on the table

guide cover

The ETUI held a Monthly Forum on 22 February to mark the recent publication of a guide on ‘The why and how of working time reduction’. The topic has been back in the spotlight recently due to an initiative of IG Metall, Germany’s biggest trade union.

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5/03/2018

Collective Bargaining February 2018

Find below the highlights of the February issue of the Collective Bargaining newsletter with the most important developments at European and member state level over the month of February. This issue celebrates the 10th anniversary of this newsletter, a joint project of the ETUI and the Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Labour Studies (AIAS).

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2/03/2018

Strong trade unions are a sign of solidarity among workers

Do trade unions encourage the dualization of the labour market? Some criticise them for neglecting those in precarious employment, focusing instead on defending only the interests of their members, primarily workers in ‘good jobs’. A study by an international team of industrial relations researchers argues against these clichés. On 14 February two university lecturers presented the key results of this research at an ETUI monthly forum.

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