The National Assembly is debating Vietnam planned participation in the International Labor Organization Convention 98 on the right to organize and do collective bargaining
Vice President Dang Thi Ngoc Thinh delivers statement on Vietnam joining the International Labor Organization’s Convention 98 on the right to organize and do collective bargaining (Photo: quochoi.vn)
Vice President Dang Thi Ngoc Thinh has submitted to the Assembly the President’s statement on Vietnam joining the Convention, thereby honoring its Free Trade Agreement commitments.
As of January, 165 of 187 ILO members had joined Convention 98. It’s essential for Vietnam, a market economy, to join because effective collective bargaining, particularly related to wage issues, is important for building harmonious, stable, and progressive industrial relations.
Promoting international labor standards
The Convention addresses 3 main points: protecting workers and trade unions from acts of discrimination by employers; protecting workers’ organizations from interference and manipulation by employers; and promoting good-will and voluntary collective bargaining.
These are the foundations for Vietnam’s labor market and are in line with Vietnam’s market economy and determination to build modern industrial relations.
Vice President Dang Thi Ngoc Thinh said, “Vietnam’s planned participation in Convention 98 continues to specify the implementation of Party and State policies and will not go against the Constitution. It will insist on respect for national independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity, will reject the use or threat of force or interference in the internal affairs of other countries, and will pursue equality for mutual benefit towards securing Vietnam’s national interests during its international economic integration.”
Membership in Convention 98 will enable workers and employers in Vietnam to conduct collective bargaining on wages and establish other labor conditions like overtime work, mid-shift meals, and other benefits.
Dang Ngoc Nghia, a deputy for Thua Thien-Hue province, said, “The President asked the on-going National Assembly session to approve Vietnam’s joining Convention 98. I am keen to protect the interests of workers and trade unions and support both workers and employers. This issue is compatible to Vietnam’s international integration and reflects its will to protect human rights and the right to work, contributing to creating labor productivity and high quality labor. I fully support Vietnam’s membership in the Convention.”
Honoring labor-related commitments in FTAs
The President’s statement reiterated the need to join the Convention, saying it demonstrates Vietnam’s determination and efforts to realize its commitments related to labor stated in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) and undertake its obligations as an ILO member.
It will pave the way for Vietnam to sign a free trade agreement with the EU. According to a government poll, all ministries and sectors agree on the need to join the ILO Convention 98.
Do Van Sinh, a deputy for Quang Tri province, said, “Joining Convention 98 means we are following the CPTPP roadmap. The sooner the better because we will ensure that we honor our commitments and work harder for international integration. Though our economy is small, it is wide open. So every global problem will take a toll on us. But we will also enjoy advantages. That’s why we should capitalize on strengths and seize the opportunities.”
The government has publicized the ILO Convention 98 to the wider public and reviewed laws to ensure effective implementation of the Convention.