Industrial Relations and Labour Policy Seminar in Mongolia

JILAF, together with the Confederation of Mongolian Trade Unions (CMTU), held a two-day industrial relations and labour policy seminar on June 30 and July 1. The seminar, which was held at a CMTU training facility on the outskirts of Ulaanbaatar, was attended by 80 people, including representatives of provincial organizations in Mongolia and affiliated trade union leaders. Although JILAF holds this seminar every year in Mongolia, this time many of the participants were trade union leaders attending for the first time.
On the first day, from the JILAF side, Field Project Group Leader Hitoshi Suzuki and Information Service Group Leader Toshiyuki Umemura gave lectures on “Industrial Relations in Japan and the Role of Trade Unions.” Among other things, it was pointed out that together with economic growth and the expansion of investment, the issue is whether employment and working conditions can be ensured and social security established. Also, regarding industrial relations in Japan, it was noted that the three principles of productivity have been established by labour and management based on the historical development of the movement from the end of World War II to the present and that both collective bargaining and a labour-management consultation system exist.
Next, Mr.Erdenebaatar, Vice Director at the Mongolian Employers’ Federation, Ms. Altantuya, a senior specialist at the Mongolian Ministry of Social Welfare and Labour, and CMTU Secretary General Adiya spoke about the present state of industrial relations in Mongolia and related issues, explaining viewpoints and countermeasures from the perspectives of management, government, and labour, respectively. Their presentations were followed by discussions with the participants, who spoke about the lack of a unified national response on such matters as labour standards due to political instability and the difficulty of concluding labour agreements.
On the second day, in the morning lectures were given by Ms. Gerelmaa, a specialist at the Mongolian Ministry of Social Welfare and Labour, on “Reform of the Social Security System Currently Being Considered,” Ms. Enkhzul of the Mongolian Productivity Center on “Productivity Improvement and Fair Distribution,” CMTU Vice-President Ms. Otgontungalag Tsevel on “Labour Law Revisions Currently under Consideration,” and Mr. Erdenetugs, the Head of department of Labour and social security department, General Authority of State Inspection, on “Application of Labour Law and Inspections for Compliance.”
As examples of issues involved in industrial relations and how to overcome them, presentations were then given by a mining and manufacturing workers’ union, telecommunication workers’ union, local public employees’ union, and cement workers’ union on efforts toward the conclusion of labour agreements and industrial health and safety.
In the afternoon session the participants divided into four groups for discussions that took account of the lectures and reports they had heard in the morning and on the previous day. Each group addressed one of four themes: (1) labour value, (2) industrial health and safety, (3) the productivity improvement movement, and (4) the gap between labour law and reality. After the discussions, each group gave a presentation on the direction of future efforts by trade unions in light of present conditions. CMTU Secretary General Adiya and JILAF Group Leaders Suzuki and Umemura added their comments.
Finally, closing the seminar, CMTU President Amgalanbaatar stated, “In the process of transition to a market economy, struggle is necessary, but an attitude of overcoming difficulties through cooperation between labour and management is necessary too.”
In 2010 Mongolia achieved high growth against the background of lively mining and manufacturing industries. This growth has continued in recent years, albeit at a slower pace. Foreign capital continues to flow into the country as well. Mongolia retains vestiges of its socialist past, and the CMTU is the sole national center for trade unions in the country. Unions are struggling to conclude new labour agreements with employers, and the number of organized members is continuing to decline. As a consequence of the transition of Mongolia’s economic system, revisions of undeveloped labour and social security legislation are continuing. The CMTU continues to be actively involved.


06/30TueSeminar day 1
07/01WedSeminar day 2

Photos of the Participants

The Mongolian Ministry of Social Welfare and Labour and Mongolian Employers’ Federation

The Mongolian Productivity Center and stretching for relaxation

Group work

Wrap-up by JILAF Group Leader Umemura

CMTU President Amgalanbaatar

Commemorative photo of all the participants