China - Trade union elections (2011)

Although the Trade Union Law states that trade union officers at each level should be elected, this is often ignored, and most officials are appointed. In addition, elected candidates are subject to approval by the provincial-level All China Federation of Trade Unions (ACFTU) committees. «Paper unions» essentially created by management and local ACFTU officials continue to be widespread with many workers unaware of the existence of a trade union in their enterprise.

However, many provinces have developed, or are in the process of developing, regulations concerning the obligation to hold trade union elections as stipulated in the Trade Union Law. Also, in the wake of its inaction during the strikes at Honda, the union there agreed to hold elections directly for its enterprise officials as demanded by workers.

Hong Kong businesses have lobbied hard against draft laws on collective bargaining in Guangdong and Shenzhen city despite increasing unrest there. Their lobbying reportedly led to major revisions in the Shenzhen legislation, including a rise in the proportion of workers needed for collective negotiation.

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