NFU Blog

Shaping Europe through Social dialogue

The EU highly impacts what is happening in the Nordic financial sectors, but Nordic trade unions can also influence the direction of Europe. That is why NFU is engaged in the European Social Dialogue for the Banking and Insurance sectors. Here we meet with the EU Commission, the European employers’ organizations and European trade union colleagues, to work together on sectoral policy issues such as digitalization, telework and regulation.

The European sectoral social dialogue is a dialogue forum between employers’ organizations and trade unions at European level, hosted by the European Commission. NFU is invited through our affiliation with UNI Europa Finance and participates together with our member unions, to shape EU policy through coordinated Nordic input and constructive dialogue. One of our main missions is to promote the Nordic model at EU level. But the outcome of the dialogue is also often used in collective bargaining at national level by our European colleagues, making it an efficient tool when striving for a fair and competitive Europe.

This year has been productive in the European social dialogue, both for the banking and insurance sector. In the banking social dialogue, we are currently negotiating a Joint declaration on Digitalization with the employers. We want to address challenges and opportunities with digitalization in a positive manner and shape the digital transformation in a social way to create value for society, sector, employees and consumers alike. NFU is working to ensure that professional development is prioritized in the digital transformation. The work to reach the joint declaration will continue this autumn, with the aim to have it signed by the end of this year.

A joint declaration on dealing in a social way with digitalization was signed two years ago by the social partners of the Insurance social dialogue and we are now working together with the employers to establish a mutual understanding on more specific policy recommendations on how training and professional development, time and place of work and employee representatives can support a just transition in the digital transformation. The signing of the declaration in 2016 made the insurance sector one of the first to deal with digitalization at a European level.

Those of you who have followed our work this year also know that we have published the report “Coping with Compliance” on how regulatory requirements effect finance employees work and wellbeing. The result of the study has been presented in both the bank and insurance social dialogue and our European trade union colleagues all recognize the picture of increasing pressure on finance employees.

As a result of our study, we are now working together within the Insurance social dialogue on a joint statement on how regulatory requirements effect the insurance sector and its employees. NFU’s starting point is that financial regulation must be fair, transparent, and balanced, and consider the interests of all stakeholders. A joint statement from the European social partners sends a strong message to the European Commission on how the regulatory framework is working in practice and how it can be improved. By working together with joint issues and social dialogue, we can have a significant impact and shape Europe in a way that benefits all – the sector, consumers and employees alike.

Annika Stenström

Policy Advisor
Phone: +46 704 147 770
Twitter: @AnnikaStenstrm

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