Georgia’s Road to the European Union” – Georgian Trade Unions Confederation presented initiatives and visions at the joint conference

Organized by the Georgian National Platform of the Georgian Parliament and the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum, the conference on “Georgia’s Road to the European Union” is being held.

Experts from Georgian Trade Unions Confederation, parliament, national platform, local and international organizations participate in the conference.

Among the main issues to be discussed at the conference is the direction of labor rights.

In his speech, the president of the Georgian Trade Unions Confederation talked about the initiatives and challenges that concern the society, including employed people and trade unions, as the largest organization defending the rights of employees.

As an example, Irakli Petriashvili cited studies that confirm that employment, poverty, and unemployment are the main challenges for Georgian society, which unfortunately receive insufficient attention in the Georgian political agenda.

The president of the Georgian Trade Unions Confederation drew attention to the need to develop social dialogue at all levels in the country and the issue of setting a decent minimum wage, which is a vital issue for people. He called on the members of the parliament to support the resolution of the mentioned issue. Presented numerical indicators to visualize inequality and compared it with examples from other countries.

“The goal of increasing the minimum wage is to achieve justice among the country’s population, the result of achieving justice in incomes will be the strengthening of the middle class, which means the development of small and medium-sized businesses. In case of raising the minimum wage and solving the problems of so many people, thus they will reach the poverty line and have a normal income, they will activate the country’s economy and the development of local production will be facilitated, as well as jobs will increase” – said Irakli Petriashvili.

At the conference, the trade unions also focused on such important issues as: the importance of formalizing informal employment, the labor migration law, women’s labor rights, the right to strike, sectoral safety standards, etc.

The deputy chairmen, Raisa Lipartelian and Tamar Surmava, strengthened the positions of Georgian Trade Unions Confederation on the mentioned issues with concrete examples.

“When we talk about integration with the European Union, unfortunately, in many cases, the conversation cannot go beyond 12 recommendations and one or two issues from these 12, which occupy the main time of our political discussion, but, in fact, Europe is in this association agreement, Europe is in the development of these sectors and this is where the interest of our people lies. The issues that we will talk about today are related to their lives. “Unfortunately, these issues do not occupy the main topic in the political discussion, but this has a direct impact on increasing the well-being of our population,” said Shalva Papuashvili, the chairman of the Parliament of Georgia.  

The first joint conference “Georgia’s Road to the European Union” was held on July 25.