In January, union members at French pharmaceutical giant Sanofi Aventis in the Philippines, took action in different regions of the country to end a collective bargaining deadlock. Negotiations between the local union and the company management had broken down in September 2015 over wage increases.
Calling for renewed negotiations, more than 70 Sanofi union members, together with allied unions and IndustriALL Global Union’s representatives, picketed in front of the Sanofi Aventis office in Makati, Philippines on 20 January. Union actions also took place in Angeles, Pampanga, Cebu and Davao.
The actions led to resumed negotiations between the union and management, and a new collective bargaining agreement was signed on 25 January in the presence of Philippines’ Labour Secretary.
Workers at Sanofi Aventis will receive a nine per cent salary increase, a goodwill bonus, as well as guaranteed funds from the Labour Department for seminars and trainings.
“After several days of negotiations, we are pleased to see our demands met in what is a win-win situation for both employees and the company. The new collective bargaining agreement shows the power of unions,” says Leilani Lucido, president of Sanofi Aventis Employees Union (SAEU).
“IndustriALL Global Union congratulates Sanofi Aventis workers on their determination and good collective bargaining. IndustriALL's Sanofi trade union network has shown support and solidarity during this conflict, which has been very appreciated. When workers unite through networks, they are a powerful force,” said Kemal Özkan, IndustriALL assistant general secretary.
Sanofi-Aventis is one of the leading pharmaceutical firm in the Philippines and fourth largest in the world in terms of sales.