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Sip Nieuwsma

Special Advisor

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“Social dialogue contributes to more prosperity”

'I have worked for VNO-NCW, the umbrella employers’ organisation in the Netherlands. My core business was negotiating with trade unions and with the Ministry of Social Affairs about propositions of the government. These consultations took place in the Social-Economic Council and the bipartite Foundation of Labour. Besides that, I lobbied with the political parties in the Parliament. Moreover, the Foundation had his consultations twice a year directly with the Government regarding the policy for the next year. Issues were wages, negotiations for Collective Labour Agreements, labour market, flexible contracts, bringing unemployed back to the vacancies, skills, social security and labour law. 

So I have a lot of experience in the importance of having the right attitude to realise the goals of employers in negotiating / lobbying with politicians together with trade unions or in other cases separately. If employers and trade unions create solutions together, they are strong negotiation partners towards the government. This influence prevents the government to make legislation that might turn out unfavourable.

In this way I contributed, together with the Dutch trade union Mondiaal FNV and after four years of support to Peruvian employers and employees organisations, to the formal establishment of an  “Association of Labour “ in Peru. Peruvian employers and important national trade-unions are active in this Association.

My drive is that mutual trust between employers and trade unions can be created and that they become aware of the fact that employers and trade unions are mutually dependant on each other to realise the best lobby results for their members vis-a-vis the government.'