Who is afraid of derogatory agreements at company level?

AutoreAntoine Jacobs
Who is afraid of derogatory agreements
at company level?
A J
During his entire scientic career Bruno Veneziani has always been fasci-
nated by the phenomenon of the social dialogue between employers and trade
unions, both in a national and international perspective. So he must have had
special interest in the FIAT-Pomigliano Agreement of 2010 and the Interconfe-
deral Agreement of 28 June, 2011 and all developments surrounding them.
The FIAT Pomigliano Agreement 2010 brought for the workers in the FIAT-
plant of Pomigliano some important deteriorations of their working conditions
in respect to the national sectoral agreement (C, 2010). Later the inter-
confederal agreement of June 28 2011 concluded between the largest emplo-
yers confederation (Conndustria) and all three main trade union confederations
(CGIL, CISL and UIL) recognized the democratic rule according to which if a
company collective agreement is accepted by the majority of the trade unions
or workers, it has a mandatory effect for all workers of that company (C,
An overview
The main motive for the FIAT-Pomigliano agreement was the need for the
FIAT company to survive in a globalized market and to be competitive on a
transnational level. It is clear that all Western European nations are faced by the
challenge of globalisation, internationalisation and competition from countries
with signicantly lower wage levels. Notably manufacturing companies are mo-
ving their activities from high-cost to low-cost countries. As the rigidities on the
labour markets have been blamed for the problems in the economy, this has, in
all these nations, provoked a strong demand for deregulation of labour law and
for more exibility. As part of that endeavour in several EU Member States the
relationship between the various levels of collective bargaining has come under
In most Western European countries after World War II the level of em-
ployment conditions of most workers has been predominantly determined by
sector-level (= industry-wide) collective agreement, although traditionally there
have also been single-employer agreements. Since a number of years already
there has been increasing pressure to decentralize the xation of employment

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