Collective Bargaining Agreement signed for Jordanian Apparel Sector
A sector-wide agreement between employers’ associations and the garment union signed in Jordan.
AMMAN (ILO News) A collective bargaining agreement (CBA) between two apparel employers’ associations and Jordan’s garment union was signed on Monday (May 27), in an unprecedented step to strengthen their partnership, promote social dialogue and improve the working conditions of some 40,000 workers in the sector.
Through their joint efforts, the parties involved have negotiated a CBA, which is considered to be one of the more comprehensive of its type in the garment sector anywhere in the world.
The agreement was signed between the Jordan Garments, Accessories & Textiles Exporters’ Association (J-GATE), The Association of Owners of Factories, Workshops and Garments (AOFWG) and the General Trade Union of Workers in Textile, Garment & Clothing Industries, in a ceremony attended by Dr Nidal Katamine, Jordan’s Minister of Labour and Minister of Transport.
’’It is the first time in Jordan that this sort of agreement is signed. It provides steps for the regulation of the relationship between workers and their employers in accordance with Jordan’s laws,’’ said Fathallah Omrani, President of the General Trade Union of Workers in Textile, Garment and Clothing Industries.
“It’s a very important agreement for the sector, and it reflects the understanding between the employers and workers. This understanding serves the national good and the national economy,” said Mohammad Khourma, chairman of the Jordan Garments, Accessories & Textile Exporters’ Association (JGATE).
Discussion on the drafting of the CBA began following disputes between workers and their employers in the apparel industry over wages, working conditions and dormitory standards.
Better Work Jordan (BWJ) and the International Labour Organization (ILO) promoted the bargaining process by providing collective bargaining training to both the garment union and employers prior to the negotiations. ILO Experts reviewed the draft agreement to ensure that the language is consistent with Jordan’s international standards. Plans are now underway to provide follow-up training to both parties regarding the administration of the agreement.
“For a first contract, it is quite comprehensive with provisions on union recognition and access to workers, dues check-off, dormitory standards, dispute settlement, employer rights, and annual seniority bonuses for all workers regardless of their nationalities,” said BWJ Programme Manager Philip Fishman.