New political situation brings employers and trade unions together New political situation brings employers and trade unions together

New political situation brings employers and trade unions together

Peter Boorsma Country manager View profile

Employers federations of Santa Cruz, Cochabamba, Tarija, Potosí, Chuquisaca and La Paz want to set up a constructive dialogue with regional trade unions. Talks can concern all kind of topics of mutual interest, like regional development, OSH and employability. That was the conclusion of a workshop for managers of employers’ organisations in Santa Cruz, 31 of January.

The elections of October 2020 were followed by fierce protests because Bolivians suspected fraud and did not accept a new term of President Evo Morales. In November Morales fled the country and a new ad interim-government was installed. New elections are foreseen in May 2020.

The new political situation opens new opportunities for a bipartite social dialogue. It is unlikely that trade unions will have the same favorable treatment as during the 14 years of Morales presidency. Trade unions will have to negotiate with the employers for salary raises and cannot rely on government support anymore. Now employers are willing to meet trade unions in the middle, there is a big opportunity to start of comprehensive social dialogue. In this the COVID-19 crisis may even lead to closer cooperation between the two actors.