CNV executive Willem Jelle Berg wants the members of the Vietnamese trade delegation to pay greater attention to finding ways to improve the position of workers. The union is responsible for various programme activities taking place during the first three days of the trade delegation. CNV Internationaal will show trade delegation members how the position of workers is being improved in innovative ways by reinforcing their labour rights. This will be discussed with workers from the textile industry. Other topics which will be covered during the trade mission include the importance of decent wages, sustainable production, social dialogue, and trade union freedom. Prime Minister Rutte is leading the mission for companies and knowledge institutions.
The programme in brief:
Monday, 8 April: Social Dialogue
The trade mission begins Monday morning with a tri-partite meeting (of Dutch and Vietnamese representatives from the government, employers’, and workers’ organisations) on how social dialogue works and what can be achieved with social dialogue. CNV executive Berg and representatives from CNV’s partner union, VGCL, will participate in this discussion.
Tuesday, 9 April: Visit to textile factory and sustainable fashion show with Prime Minister Rutte
Tuesday morning, CNV executive Berg, the Fair Wear Foundation, representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Development Cooperation and International Trade), trade association InRetail, and employer organisation VNO-NCW will visit a textile factory in the Van Lam district near Hanoi. This textile factory is part of an innovative CNV project that works towards improving workers’ rights, creating better working conditions for women, training workers, and preventing unfair competition. During this luncheon, the delegation will speak with workers from the textile factories and members of CNV Internationaal’s partner organisation, VGCL. A central theme is the social dialogue which was recently initiated by CNV Internationaal. This social dialogue will hopefully lead to a multi-company collective labour agreement for the Vietnamese textile industry. Some of the questions being asked include: What are the advantages? The ambitions? The challenges? How are workers’ rights being addressed? How can these rights be improved through this social dialogue? Have there been any signs of improvement since CNV’s first visit? CNV Internationaal is working on this project in a strategic partnership with the Fair Wear Foundation.
In the evening there is a “Sustainable Fashion Show,” which has been organised by CNV Internationaal, the Dutch embassy in Hanoi, and the Fair Wear Foundation. Various sustainable clothing brands will be shown on a catwalk on the central square in Hanoi. CNV executive Berg will address Prime Minister Rutte during the fashion show to stress the importance of strengthening the position of workers in the Vietnamese textile industry. Berg says, “Because Vietnam is one of the Netherlands’ most important trade partners in the textile industry, it is of the utmost importance that we invest in more than just trading. We must ensure a sustainable trade relationship which pays attention to the rights of the workers. Social dialogue is an excellent means of creating solutions and excellent Dutch export products.”
Wednesday, 10 April: Corporate Social Responsibility and Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
Wednesday morning, Corporate Social Responsibility and sustainable development are the central themes of the programme. In the morning, there is a special panel discussion with the Deputy Prime Minister of Vietnam, Prime Minister Rutte, and the employers’ foreman, De Boer. Afterwards, CNV Internationaal executive Berg will give a presentation on taking responsibility in the supply chain and creating a multi-company collective labour agreement.
Wednesday afternoon CNV Internationaal will host a seminar on social dialogue for the delegation members. People from partner union VGCL will be provided with an explanation on the process of social dialogue and how it works.
Publication date 04 04 2019