The Nordic Region has a natural voice in the G20

Magnus Gissler, General Secretary Magnus Gissler, General Secretary

The importance of the G20 has increased in the international arena. This can be seen against the backdrop of the economic crisis and it has become increasingly difficult for the international community to quickly reach a consensus in important multilateral agreements. Through the G20, issues are in practice already agreed on before the formal decisions are made by the official international bodies. The Nordic Region has currently no influence in the G20 and an observer seat means that the Nordic countries, which do not qualify individually, lack vital influence.

The Nordic Region has a strong tradition of being an active member of international organisations. Therefore, the Nordic trade union confederations, through the Council of Nordic Trade Unions, are of the opinion that the Nordic countries should jointly actively seek to cooperate with the G20. The Council of Nordic Trade Unions represents 9 million unionised workers in the Nordic Region.

"The Nordic economies are often described as successful role models from an international point of view. The Nordic model has been highlighted by, for example, the OECD and the World Economic Forum as a social model that is better able to manage a crisis than most other models, which as far as the Nordic Region is concerned leads to the contribution of constructive proposals regarding G20 work on sustainable growth and competitiveness", according to Magnus Gissler, General Secretary of the Council of Nordic Trade Unions.

The Nordic bargaining model with its extensive labour market regulation through collective agreements is unique from both the European as well as the global perspective. It has been successful in creating growth and jobs in the Nordic Region and has evened out income gaps. A central aspect of the model and the way it works is the cooperation between the social partners and the social dialogue. A high level of trade union affiliation, strong independent social partners, the broad scope of the agreements and constructive cooperation between the social partners are all necessary prerequisites for stability, predictability and industrial peace. The model, which makes it possible to manage structural changes and conversion, has a good international reputation.

"We urge the Nordic governments of Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden and Iceland as well as the Nordic Council of Ministers to coordinate and look into Regions that would lead to Nordic influence and cooperation with the G20", says Lauri Lyly, President of the Council of Nordic Trade Unions.

The Nordic Trade Union position

The Nordic trade union confederations, through the Council of Nordic Trade Unions, are of the opinion that the Nordic countries should jointly actively seek to cooperate with the G20. This position was adopted by the Board of the Council of Nordic Trade Unions the 11th of May, 2016. The Council of Nordic Trade Unions represents 9 million unionised workers in the Nordic Region.

  1. The trade union confederations, through the Council of Nordic Trade Union (NFS), are of the opinion that the Nordic countries should seek to cooperate with the G20. The cooperation should be in the shape of dialogue and consultation with the social partners.
  2. We urge the Nordic governments of Denmark, Finland, Norway, Sweden and Iceland as well as the Nordic Council of Ministers to coordinate and look into the Regions that would lead to Nordic influence and cooperation with the G20.
  3. The Nordic model with strong individual independent social partners can promote a sustainable, inclusive and fair working life; socially, economically and ecologically; in the Nordic Region, Europe and globally. Both the L20 and B20 are therefore a given forum for the Nordic social partners.