The Tripartite Negotiating Forum (TNF), which brings together government, business and labour, is expected to resume this week.
TNF was initially established in 1998 as a voluntary platform but it was later legislated through the Tripartite Negotiating Forum Act of 2019.
Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Minister Paul Mavima, who chairs the TNF, said:
We are going to have a task force meeting in Mutare this Tuesday before we convene a full TNF in two weeks.
We work through various committees, each dealing with specific issues which they bring to the agenda of TNF.
Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Union (ZCTU) secretary-general Japhet Moyo said that labour organisations were looking forward to the meeting. He said:
The Government (which chairs the forum) officially wrote to us proposing that we constitute a task force to negotiate a social contract which then feeds into the main TNF.
We are happy with the move. Our major concern is on the pricing of goods, low wages and incidences of dismissals of workers’ representatives.
Employers’ Confederation of Zimbabwe (EMCOZ) president Demos Mbauya said:
There is consensus within TNF that we need to convene and dialogue to come up with a social contract specifically to address the issue of economic stability.
To that end, the economic cluster of the TNF will be meeting next week (this week) to start work on the social contract.
We need to give dialogue and consensus-building around major economic policy interventions a chance. As business we are committed to playing our part.
The main wing of TNF last met in April 2020 but the meeting ended prematurely when labour walked out in protest over the minimum wage.
Labour had proposed that the minimum wage should be negotiated at the national level, while Government and business wanted sector-based negotiations.