After almost 13 months,
negotiations for the new collective bargaining agreement between the Union of
Workers of Embotelladora Central SA (STECSA)
and Coca-Cola FEMSA were suspended last February 21.
Forty-eight of the 85
clauses proposed by the parties have been approved so far, but agreement has
still not been reached on the issues that are most critical for the future of
labor relations in the company.
“Among the 37 clauses
still unresolved are some that Coca-Cola FEMSA will not compromise on. If
these clauses are approved it will be like signing the union’s death sentence,”
Carlos Luch, STECSA general secretary, told SIREL.
According to Luch, the
transnational corporation is aiming to implement measures that will jeopardize
labor stability and wage guarantees.
It is also seeking to
put into practice a pre-sales model “that has proven unfeasible in
Guatemala and which would deal a severe blow to our structure, leaving us
vulnerable,” the STECSA leader said.
has begun carrying out pressure actions at the central plant located
in the Guatemalan capital. These protests could be stepped up over
the coming weeks.
Faced with proposals it
considers unacceptable and Coca-Cola FEMSA’s unwillingness to engage in a
true dialogue, compounded with the company’s repeated use of delaying tactics,
STECSA’s negotiating committee called for a suspension of collective
“We’re not asking for
much. We simply want to ratify what we have in our collective bargaining
agreement, that is, the rights gained over many years of struggle. We consider
this our floor for negotiation. From there we would dialogue with the company
for wage improvements,” Luch said.
notes that several of the clauses proposed by the company are aimed at
dismantling the Mixed Board and modifying the levels of efficiency, which could
lead to a reduction in income, among other things.
negotiating committee has had a closed attitude, delaying negotiations and even
refusing to sign clauses in which both parties were in agreement, telling us
that they simply didn’t feel like it.”
“They have tried to
make wage improvements conditional to our acceptance of their proposals, but for
us the structure of our agreement is more important than wages,” the STECSA
general secretary said.
has begun mobilizing to address this situation, carrying out pressure actions at
the central plant located in the Guatemalan capital. These protest measures
could be stepped up over the coming weeks.
“We’ve planned visits
to every agency and workplace around the country, to report on the situation to
all our union members, and everyone is on the same page. In addition, we already
have an agenda of mobilizations that will be stepped up as the days advance, and
we’re coordinating our actions on an international level with IUF Latin
America (Rel-UITA) and FELATRAC.”
“We’re hoping that the company will reconsider its position, because we’re
not willing to renounce any of the rights we have gained,” Luch