See also:
» 28.03.2011 - SA workers to "invade Swaziland"
» 23.03.2010 - World Cup business frustration hits SA taxis
» 28.07.2009 - New offer to avert further municipal strike
» 27.07.2009 - SA municipal workers on strike
» 23.04.2009 - Govt threatens to withhold pay for striking doctors
» 09.04.2009 - SA truckers vow to contrinue strike over Easter weekend
» 27.10.2008 - SA Mining giants warned of deteriorating safety
» 11.08.2008 - Telkom South Africa, unions settle dispute

China wholesale online through

Houlihan's coupons

Finn autentiske matoppskrifter fra hele verden på
Gazpacho Børek Kartoffelsalat Taboulé Gulasj Albóndigas Cevapi Rougaille Japrak sarma Zwiebelbrot Klopse Giouvetsi Paella Pljeskavica Pica pau Pulpo a la gallega Flammkuchen Langosj Tapenade Chatsjapuri Pasulj Lassi Kartoffelpuffer Tortilla Raznjici Knödel Lentejas Bœuf bourguignon Korianderchutney Brenneslesuppe Proia Sæbsi kavurma Sardinske calamares

Autentiske matoppskrifter fra hele verden finner du på
Réunion Portugal Aserbajdsjan Serbia Tyskland Seychellene Bosnia Spania Libanon Belgia India Kroatia Hellas Italia Ungarn Komorene Georgia Mauritius Østerrike Romania Frankrike

South Africa
Labour | Society | Economy - Development

Unions to stop Walmart entering South Africa

Massmart supermarket store in South Africa

© Massmart/afrol News
afrol News, 18 March
- South African and international trade unions are facing the US retail giant Walmart in court next week to stop it from entering into the South African economy without "appropriate conditions."

The legal action against the US giant, which has a globally poor reputation when it comes to workers' rights, is spearheaded by the South African Commercial, Catering and Allied Workers Union (SACCAWU) and its international partner UNI Global Union.

"We are urging the Competition Tribunal to consider the experience of workers from around the globe as it deliberates on Walmart's takeover of South African retailer Massmart," said UNI Deputy General Secretary Christy Hoffman in a statement forwarded to afrol News.

Massmart shareholders have already accepted Walmart's offer to pay US$ 4.2 billion for a 51 percent stake in the South African company. But Mr Hoffman hopes unions can convince South Africa's Competition Tribunal to overturn the deal.

South African trade unions have been concerned about the Walmart takeover since it was known in September last year, at first trying to convince Massmart shareholders not to sell. In addition to concerns over workers' rights, SACCAWU is also alarmed about "the impact that a Walmart take-over would have on local distributors, suppliers and manufacturers," as the US company had "become so powerful" that it could dictate prices.

The South African government has also expressed its own concerns about the deal, asking the Competition Tribunal hold hearings on the deal and get more information from Walmart on how it will operate in the country.

"Walmart employs severe tactics to silence workers and keep them from having a voice on the job. It also uses its immense market share to make drastic cuts in its supply costs, often pitting local companies in a vicious race to the bottom to provide goods to Walmart at the cheapest prices," Mr Hoffman holds.

"We think this deal will be disastrous for the South African economy if the Tribunal fails to set conditions now to protect local workers and businesses," the trade unionist concluded.

In addition to next week's court case, SACCAWU and UNI are also starting a major campaign directed towards Massmart's SOuth African employees, informing about Walmart's labour policies. Finally, a large demonstration is planned for 24 March in Pretoria.

"We don't want to see the 'Walmartisation' of South Africa like we have seen in the United States, in Chile, in Argentina, in Mexico and in many other countries around the world," commented Head of UNI Commerce Alke Boessiger.

"Time and again we have seen Walmart enter a country and drive down wages and conditions for its own employees, depress conditions in the retail sector generally and wreak havoc in the local business community by driving competitors out of business and pushing suppliers to offer the lowest prices for goods sold," Ms Boessinger explained.

The trade unions believe that Walmart should be held to a strict standard to protect the local economy and workers' rights. "Allowing Walmart to operate under its 'business as usual' model would be a disaster for workers in its stores, its competitors and its suppliers," Ms Boessiger said.

- Create an e-mail alert for South Africa news
- Create an e-mail alert for Labour news
- Create an e-mail alert for Society news
- Create an e-mail alert for Economy - Development news

    Printable version

On the Afrol News front page now

Rwanda succeeds including citizens in formal financial sector

afrol News - It is called "financial inclusion", and it is a key government policy in Rwanda. The goal is that, by 2020, 90 percent of the population is to have and actively use bank accounts. And in only four years, financial inclusion has doubled in Rwanda.

Famine warning: "South Sudan is imploding"

afrol News - The UN's humanitarian agencies now warn about a devastating famine in Sudan and especially in South Sudan, where the situation is said to be "imploding". Relief officials are appealing to donors to urgently fund life-saving activities in the two countries.
Panic in West Africa after Ebola outbreak in Guinea

afrol News - Fear is spreading all over West Africa after the health ministry in Guinea confirmed the first Ebola outbreak in this part of Africa. According to official numbers, at least 86 are infected and 59 are dead as a result of this very contagious disease.
Ethiopia tightens its already strict anti-gay laws

afrol News - It is already a crime being homosexual in Ethiopia, but parliament is now making sure the anti-gay laws will be applied in practical life. No pardoning of gays will be allowed in future, but activist fear this only is a signal of further repression being prepared.
Ethiopia plans Africa's biggest dam

afrol News / Africa Renewal - Ethiopia's ambitious plan to build a US$ 4.2 billion dam in the Benishangul-Gumuz region, 40 km from its border with Sudan, is expected to provide 6,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for its population plus some excess it can sell to neighbouring countries.

front page | news | countries | archive | currencies | news alerts login | about afrol News | contact | advertise | español 

©  afrol News. Reproducing or buying afrol News' articles.

   You can contact us at