“Kazakhstan trade-union organizations must consolidate” – chairman of Trade-union Federation of the Republic of Kazakhstan Bakytzhan Abdyraiym

The session of the General Council of the Federation of the trade union of the Republic of Kazakhstan was held in Astana today during which the results of 2018 activities were reviewed.

Before the session opening of the capital center “Tatulasy Ortalygy” (Reconciliation Centre) which intended to be an effective platform for resolving labor and other disputes out of court by way of the compromise procedures. In the framework of the Memorandum of Mutual Cooperation of Trade-union Federation with the Supreme Court in 2018 in all territorial associations of the Trade-union were established 17 centers of reconciliation “Tatulasy Ortalygy” with which 2140 meditative procedures, 980 of them via labor disputes were solved in the framework of 872 meditative agreements and 108 performed negotiations were held from March of 2018.

Additionally, scientific monograph “Trade unions: theory and practice” which was published on the initiative of Trade-union Federation of the Republic of Kazakhstan, was presented.

A book is the first monographic research in independent Kazakhstan about Trade-union status and activity, analysts of position and law basis of Trade-union movement in the country and in the world. Recommendations for the development of the institute of Trade-union representatives of employees and social partnership in Kazakhstan were suggested by authors.
During the session of General cabinet under leadership of chairman of Trade-union Federation of the Republic of Kazakhstan Bakytzhan Abdyraiym, measures were considered to enhance the role of primary trade union organizations in labor collectives, conduct public control over compliance with labor legislation, regulate social and labor relations, also prevent and resolve labor disputes and conflicts.

“Trade-union Federation of the Republic of Kazakhstan retains the status of the country’s largest social organizations uniting in its ranks about 2 million trade-union members, 22 branch trade unions, 16 territorial entities and union more than 18 thousand primary trade-union organizations. Continuation of consolidation of trade unions was the creation of 470 new primary trade union organizations last year, which include more than 35 thousand people”, – said the head of Trade-union Federation of the Republic of Kazakhstan.

He reminded that 2018 was the Year of Safety and Labor Protection. B. Abdyraiym said that in order to ensure safe working conditions, jointly with social partners, in all regions, the Safe Work program is being implemented, and held a republican campaign named “Together we will increase the culture of preventive labor protection” and the contest “The Best Technical Inspector of Labor Protection” of the Trade Union Federation of Kazakhstan.

The result of joint work with social partners in comparison with 2017 last year managed to reduce the level of industrial injuries from 1,678 to 1,568 or 6.6%, incl. fatal from 244 to 216 or by 11.5%.

Today, 12855 enterprises and organizations of industrial inspectors of labor protection have been established and operate in organizations and enterprises of Kazakhstan, there are also more than 17 thousand employees working in occupational safety and health.

At the same time, the necessity is marked to increase in the number of production councils in the enterprises of the primary sector which is 1 233 or 13% of the total number of operating steep and medium enterprises in Kazakhstan.

In 2018 together with the social partners, a number of measures were implemented to reduce the number of 10 collective labor disputes from 5 to 2 last 5 years in contrast with 2017 year. Conflicts declined from 28 to 2 facts or for 14th time.

Federation of Trade Unions managed to solve labor conflicts on the initial stage at the Tobol station (Kostanay region), at the company “Oil Services Company” (Mangystau Oblast).

The Memorandum of mutual cooperation with the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kazakhstan was signed for individual labor conflict resolution pre-court order the Federation of Trade Unions. In its implementation, in all territorial professional trade unions were created 17 reconciliation centers “Tatulasy Ortalygy» which since March 2018 held 2,140 meditative procedures within 980 on labor issues was solved positively in the frame of 872 agreements and 108 negotiations.

In 2018 the number of valid collective agreements in the Republic was increased for effective safety of labor rights of employees by 16.1% compared to the 2017 from 77,750 to 92,645.

At the same time, low coverage (37.2%) of collective agreements was noted in the field of small business.

An important tool in the protection of labor rights of workers is the legalization of labor relations. From March 1, 2018 the Trade-union Federation of Republic of Kazakhstan launched the republican action “Start a labor contract!” During the rally, more than 10 thousand employers in the country signed labor contracts with 37 thousand employees.

Trade-union Federation of Republic of Kazakhstan also takes an active part in the work of the republican and regional unions in monitoring wage increases for low-wage categories of workers. The Federation has initiated the issue of revising the methodology for determining the base salary as well as the size of tariff rates for all categories of workers.

Work is underway to amend the changes in the size of tariff rates and inter-digit coefficients in industry agreements and collective bargaining agreements. The Ministry of Labor and Social Protection of the Population raised the question of the need to define criteria for the establishment of the minimum wage rate, as well as the development of a unified system of remuneration of workers engaged in heavy work with harmful and dangerous working conditions. Thanks to the efforts of the trade unions, from January 1, 2018, the structure of the subsistence minimum, which consists of food and non-food parts, was changed. The ratio was 60% to 40%, and then it became 55% to 45%. In monetary terms, the subsistence minimum increased by 15% (from 24,459 to 28,284 tenge), and from January 1, 2019 another 17.7% (29,698 tenge).

In the matter of payment of wage arrears, the trade union’s concern is that 70% of this debt is accounted for by organizations in the process of bankruptcy. Trade-union Federation of Republic of Kazakhstan intends to seek amendments to the law “On Rehabilitation and Bankruptcy” in terms of ensuring the payment of wages to employees as a matter of priority and only after that the remaining mandatory payments.

The Federation of Trade Unions became a member and was actively involved in the work of the IAC on legislative activities under the Government, working groups, commissions of the Mazhylys of the Parliament, and state bodies of workers on the socio-economic and labor rights of workers. The Federation has sent proposals for the improvement of the Labor Code and the Law on Trade Unions and the implementation of recommendations of the International Labor Organization.
Thanks to the efforts of the trade unions, deputies of the Mazhylys of the Parliament initiated the development of a draft Law of the Republic of Kazakhstan on the regulation of issues of extra labor, in which FPRK made a number of proposals, including the prohibition of extra labor on hard, dangerous and harmful work.

Besides proposals were made to the Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan about the payment of compensation for damage to production injuries (regressors).
In the light of the announcement of 2019 in Kazakhstan as the Year of Youth in the current year, the Federation has planned a number of republican events aimed at solving topical social and labor issues of working youth.
During 2018, representatives of the Federation of Trade Unions took part in 32 international events on trade union activities.

This year is proposed to be declared the Year of Regions where the agenda includes raising the level and quality of work of the tripartite social partnership commissions to successfully implement regional agreements, strengthen the capacity of primary trade union organizations and create decent working conditions.
In conclusion, Bakytzhan Abdyraiym called for the country’s unions to cooperate constructively and consolidate efforts to protect the rights and interests of working people!