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MNEs

The combination of the growth of foreign direct investment, technological changes, international financial markets and a wide range of deregulation and privatisation measures have allowed MNEs to be in the driver’s seat of the global economy. The challenge for the trade union movement is to ensure that companies respect workers’ rights in every part of the world where their influence is felt and to establish a genuine global dialogue between unions and MNEs. At global level the dialogue has led to the conclusion of dozens of framework agreements between companies and the Global Union Federations, whilst in the European Union the setting up of European works councils has further promoted the notion of dialogue and respect of workers’ rights regardless of the location of companies’ operations. The dialogue between sister unions from different countries and joint solidarity actions promote such frameworks beyond the borders of the EU, whilst monitoring by unions of supply and subcontracting chains provides vital information for the national and international regulatory bodies and instruments in charge of ensuring that fundamental workers’ rights are respected.
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The ITUC represents 181 million workers in 162 countries and territories and has 340 national affiliates.
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