Helsinki (14.10.2021 - Heikki Jokinen) The forestry industry giant Stora Enso has agreed upon a company based collective agreement with the Paper Workers' Union. The deal is for 28 months and will raise pay by 4.7 per cent.

In October 2020, the Finnish forestry companies declared that in the future they will only make collective agreements on a single company basis. So far the paper workers have been covered by one generally binding collective agreement. Now, the Paper Workers' Union must negotiate more than 40 separate collective agreements.

Stora Enso is the first forestry company to make a company based deal. This has created some hope that there will not be complete chaos in the branch when the existing national agreement expires at the end of December.

The new deal will raise pay by 1.9 per cent from 28.2.2022, then a further increase of 1.9 per cent from 27.3.2023 and an additional rise of 0.9 per cent from 15.1.2024. This agreement in effect amounts to a total of 4.7 per cent rise over a 28 month period.

The pay rise is defined by cents added to hourly salaries. A bit less than half goes to everyone, the remaining share is to be decided at the unit level.

Both the Union and Stora Enso say that negotiations were held in a constructive spirit. This statement is significant, as another forestry giant UPM has shown very little willingness to negotiate at all and threatens major pay cuts and an ill-concealed wish to crush trade union rights.

Stora Enso says that it has a goal to reach a deal soon with other unions, too. The Paper Workers' Union says it will try to get all collective agreements done before the end of November.

Stora Enso has some 23 000 employees worldwide, of whom some 6,000 are in Finland. In January-June this year, Stora Enso sales were 4.9 billion Euro, with an operational profit of 692 million Euro.


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