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Czech Mining Affiliate Holds Congress

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13 July, 2005

Czech Republic affiliate Union of Mining, Geology and Oil Industry (OS PHGN) held its 5th Congress recently against a backdrop of rampant restructuring and privatisation of the coal industry on the eve of the country’s entry into the EU. Job loss in mining has been particularly steep in the Northern Bohemia region. Promises made by the ruling coalition government, led by the Social Democrats, to financially assist the unemployed have gone unfulfilled creating serious social and political tensions in mining communities. OS PHGN resolved to continue a campaign for a social plan and will consider withdrawing support for the SDP in the next elections if obligations are not met. Jan Sabel was elected president of the union and Frantisek Nekola vice president.