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Background information on industrial relations in Luxembourg

  • 25 Sep 2009
    Luxembourg: Differing views on reform of worker representation

    The new government’s programme includes improvements to employee representation in companies. Trade unions believe that the legal framework for worker representation dating from the 1970s no longer reflects the reality of how companies work. A draft legal text was drawn up in 2004, but failed to make progress. The new government now hopes to advance this legislation further; however, employer groups are not in favour of the proposed reforms.

  • 22 Sep 2009
    Representativeness of the European social partner organisations: Steel industry – Luxembourg

    The aim of this representativeness study is to identify the respective national and supranational actors (i.e. trade unions and employer organisations) in the field of industrial relations in the steel industry in Luxembourg. In order to determine their relative importance in the sector’s industrial relations, this study will, in particular, focus on their representational quality as well as on their role in collective bargaining.

  • 18 Sep 2009
    Luxemburg – Greening the European economy: responses and initiatives by Member States and social partners

    The government has decided on a series of measures which, while motivated by ecological considerations, will improve consumers’ purchasing power and at the same time help support economic activity. In addition, a draft national sustainable development plan has been drawn up in collaboration with the social partners in particular. A new strand has just been adopted in the government programme aimed at achieving economic diversification in Luxembourg. It relates to green technologies. The idea, in economic terms, is to assist existing companies to move to new processes and encourage traditional sectors to move over to new processes. In environmental terms, the aim is to improve the productivity of natural resources and to reduce environmental impacts.

  • 15 Sep 2009
    Luxembourg: Flexicurity and industrial relations

    The debate on flexicurity is a recent one in Luxembourg. The partners hold fairly different positions on the issue. Employers’ organisations are in favour of the deregulation of employment. The trade unions believe that the Luxembourg model in its current state already provides for some aspects of flexicurity. It should be pointed out that the context of the Luxembourg labour market is in itself favourable since unemployment is regarded as structural, and the Minister of Employment believes that liberalisation of the legislation would not create jobs or reduce unemployment. The latest and most important measure that has been set up is the job retention policy, the aim of which is to find alternative solutions to redundancy (training, part-time work, changing of work post, loaning of manpower, etc.). In addition, one of the key aspects which is emphasised by all parties concerns the improvement of initial and continuing training mechanisms and structures.

  • 31 Aug 2009
    Luxembourg: Trade unions demonstrate against dismantling of social security system

    In May 2009, seven Luxembourg trade unions joined forces to organise a general demonstration in protest against the threat of the dismantlement of the social security system. The protest was attended by some 16,000 people. The demonstration’s organisation on the eve of the country’s parliamentary elections on 7 June 2009 was intended as a sign to the political parties, which were invited to come out in clear favour of maintaining Luxembourg’s social model.

  • 31 Aug 2009
    Luxembourg: Interprofessional agreement on harassment and violence at work

    In June 2009, the Independent Trade Union Confederation of Luxembourg, the Luxembourg Christian Trade Union Confederation and the Union of Luxembourg Enterprises signed an interprofessional agreement on harassment and violence at work. The agreement aims to transpose into Luxembourg law the European framework agreement on harassment and violence at work concluded by the European social partners on 26 April 2007.

  • 05 Aug 2009
    Luxembourg: Trade unions agree progressive redundancy programme at Villeroy & Boch

    After a 240-year presence in Luxembourg City’s industrial landscape, the announcement by the Villeroy & Boch ceramics company of the termination of its production activities in Luxembourg has provoked astonishment. The two production lines in Luxembourg will cease activity by the end of June 2010. Amid fears of immediate mass redundancies, the company reiterated its promise not to dismiss anyone before 2010 and to negotiate a job retention plan in a relaxed atmosphere.

  • 05 Aug 2009
    Luxembourg: Luxembourg’s trade unions call for companies to display social responsibility

    Although the Luxembourg Economic and Social Council is advocating dialogue as the way out of the current economic crisis, relations between the trade unions and employer organisations are deteriorating. Meanwhile, the Tripartite Coordination Committee has produced a series of measures to tackle the crisis. The trade unions, however, are opposed to the more structural measures proposed by the employers and fear that the social dimension is being omitted from the debate.

  • 11 May 2009
    Luxembourg: Employers push for tighter controls on absenteeism

    During the negotiations on the introduction of a single status for blue and white-collar workers in Luxembourg, much debate arose regarding the impact on absenteeism and the cost to companies. Employer organisations agreed to a single status for workers in the private sector on condition that it would be cost neutral and that measures should be put in place to reduce the level of unjustified sick leave. Companies now appear to be taking action on the latter issue.

  • 28 Apr 2009
    Luxembourg: Wage flexibility and collective bargaining

    The banking sector is governed by a multi-employer agreement while the metal working sector is governed by a single employer agreement. The trend in both sectors is that the employers want to base the salaries more on performance or on merit. In the metal working sector, issues such as international competition as well as increased absenteeism have been broad forward in order to justify the introduction of VPS. The employers in the banking sector have based their arguments also on an employee survey realized by TNS-ILRES in 2006. In general, the law on the minimum wage is limiting downward wage flexibility.

  • 28 Apr 2009
    Representativeness of the European social partner organisations: Hospitals – Luxembourg

    The aim of this representativeness study is to identify the respective national and supranational actors (i.e. trade unions and employer organisations) in the field of industrial relations in the hospital sector in Luxembourg. In order to determine their relative importance in the sector’s industrial relations, this study will, in particular, focus on their representational quality as well as on their role in collective bargaining.

  • 02 Apr 2009
    Luxembourg: Mix of confidence and scepticism in face of economic crisis

    The social partners and the government are currently negotiating within the framework of the tripartite committee in order to reach an agreement about which nothing is yet known. While certain actors are optimistic, since the country is in a better economic position than others, other actors are growing more anxious. Trade unions point to the job-loss figures and fear that redundancy programmes will multiply. However, the authorities and economic analysts remain confident.

  • 31 Mar 2009
    Luxembourg: Wage formation

    Wage setting in Luxembourg depends either on legislation (in the case of public sector pay and the minimum social wage) or on collective agreements while it may also be negotiated individually by the two parties in an employment contract. The latter, however, must take account of certain reference figures (the existence of a minimum social wage or pay scales specified in applicable collective agreements). Luxembourg has an automatic wage indexation mechanism so that wages can be adjusted according to changes in the costs of living.

  • 24 Mar 2009
    Luxembourg: Social election campaign targets cross-border workers

    During the recent social elections campaign, the trade unions stepped up their campaign among cross-border workers. The measures included an increased number of meetings in Luxembourg and neighbouring countries, as well as election posters in several languages. Cross-border workers constitute over 40% of private sector workers in Luxembourg. However, their presence can be viewed negatively during an economic crisis and when unemployment is on the rise.

  • 11 Mar 2009
    Luxembourg: Eiro annual review - 2007

    There were no elections in 2007. Three collective agreements at sectoral level and 96 at enterprise level were concluded. As a result of the tripartite negotiations in 2006, there were a number of legislative developments aimed at combating unemployment (centralization of information, employment support plans, new regulation of overtime). There was a new bill for introducing a single status for employees in the private sector and a new trade union has been created in the banking sector. A law was voted for reforming the ITM (Inspection du travail et des Mines), and a permanent committee for work and labour has been set up. During 2007 there were no strikes, but there was a major dispute between the teachers’ trade union and the government. The Ministry for Equal Opportunities organized a conference in April 2007 and presented a number of studies on gender and employment in 2007. A new collective agreement was concluded with temporary work agencies. 2008 issues for OGB-L, LCGB and UEL include part-time work, stress and moral harassment, gender equality and the fight against accidents at the working place.

  • 09 Mar 2009
    Luxembourg : The impact of the information and consultation Directive

    At the present time (December 2007), Luxembourg has not yet transposed the information and consultation Directive. Initially, the government wanted to undertake a more global reform of the legislation concerning workers’ representation as part of an overall process of introducing a single status for blue- and white-collar workers, which had already been initiated. As that work has fallen behind, the transposition of the Directive is currently the subject of a bill adding new provisions to the Labour Code. Joint works committees in companies with more than 150 employees already have information and consultation rights equal to those required by the Directive, and the government has opted for a solution which maintains the role of these bodies, while giving new rights to employee committees (an existing employee representation structure in establishments with 15 or more employees) in companies with between 50 and 149 workers. However, according to the Council of State, which has given a negative response, the bill would transpose the Directive in an incomplete manner. The text will probably undergo further modifications.

  • 02 Mar 2009
    Luxembourg: Public-private project to integrate unemployed people into job market

    The structure of unemployment in Luxembourg has changed insofar as many people experience difficulties in integrating or reintegrating into the labour market regardless of the economic situation. Thus, traditional tools for promoting employment are insufficient; individual support and monitoring are indispensable complementary measures. A pilot project launched in January 2009 aims to evaluate the effectiveness of public-private cooperation in helping jobseekers.

  • 06 Feb 2009
    Luxembourg: Collective bargaining and continuous vocational training

    The law of 16 September 1996 brought in a tripartite consultative committee for vocational training ,which is asked to give its opinion prior to the taking of measures necessary for initial vocational training and continuous vocational training. However, two aspects need to be distinguished: collective access and individual access to training. As far as collective access to continuous training is concerned, there have not been many changes. Some sectors (banks, construction and hospitals) have included in their sectoral collective agreements concrete mechanisms for continuous training. The major recent progress concerns the individual access to continuous training. The signature in 2003 of an agreement between the social partners has led to the introduction of the right to 80 days off for vocation training in a career.

  • 13 Jan 2009
    Luxembourg: Study examines impact of collective agreements on wages

    The Luxembourg Central Service for Statistics and Economic Studies (STATEC) has recently published a study on the impact of collective agreements on wages. Based on the results of a survey on wage structure, the study by STATEC shows that less variation in wages emerges among those covered by an agreement. Moreover, the impact is different depending on the sector, while collective agreements tend to reduce the difference in wages between men and women.

Page last updated: 05 September, 2014