Western Cape Business News

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ECONOMY: Business, Labour Shake Hands


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Despite the often vehement opposition between organised business and organised labour, the Cape Chamber of Commerce and COSATU have found commonality on a number issues, including the urgent challenge of job creation.

“The urgency of the current employment climate does not allow for the comfort of rhetoric. A pragmatic approach is required and we are hopeful that, together, we can find ways to address these issues which are holding back our progress and impacting the lives of every South African,” explains Western Cape Provincial Secretary of COSATU, Tony Ehrenreich

In response to the need for greater collaboration, the Cape Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with COSATU, will be hosting a Job Summit on the 26th of September 2011 at the CTICC.

“There have been, and will continue to be, issues on which we disagree, but in the instances of job creation, corruption and compliance, we stand united. The time has come for us to face our common enemies together and find workable solutions for all South Africans,” says Michael Bagraim, President of the Cape Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

This is a first for the Chamber and as a result of extended talks with the Institute for Accountability in Southern Africa (IFAISA) and later with COSATU.

Talks between COSATU and the Chamber have also resulted in a draft Memorandum of Understanding between the two organisations outlining the nature of the working relationship moving forward.

The Job Summit will be held in two parts. The morning session will be hosted by the Chamber and will look at how business can work within the current legislative framework to increase job security and creation.

The afternoon session will be hosted by COSATU and will focus on practical interventions to secure jobs. This will be attended and addressed by the Ministries of Trade and Industry, Economic Development and Labour.

The day will culminate with the signing of a declaration of co-operation, formalising the draft memorandum - a landmark event for organised labour and organised business.

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