Expensive trade unions disturb coal mines

opublikowano: 22-01-2008, 14:02

Warsaw (Puls Biznesu) – Annual fees paid by coal mines to trade union representatives amount to PLN 40m (EUR 10.9m). It’s easy to  found a union, so new ones appear every now and then.

Eugeniusz Budniok, Business Centre Club deputy CEO, who took part in negotiations with Kompania Weglowa coal group miners and helped avoid strikes in 16 mines, believes that it’s high time to see how trade unions in Poland operate.

“The law was written when the situation was different. Protests at Budryk proved that old regulations disturb the sector, employers and the region. It’s high time to change the law”, Eugeniusz Budniok said.

The protest at Budryk mine was organized by, among others, a trade union founded on November 31st 2007 gathering as few as 15 people.

“It’s absurd that everyone who attracts a group of unhappy workers may found a union and cause strikes, stop production without consulting and looking for consensus with the other trade unions. That’s why we are going to propose to change the law. New trade unions could be founded only if they comprised of at least 15-20 percent of the staff”, Piotr Duda, head of Solidarnosc trade union in Silesia region said.

He does not support strike at Budryk but he offered to help to solve the problem.


More things need changing. Today, there are no time limits for heads of the unions. Besides, trade unionists may run business in the mines, and they offer do so, i.e. they have tourist services, run cafeterias, have stakes in security companies. This means that CEOs of the coal mines are dependent on them very often.

“We are making analyzes to change the law”, Janusz Olszowski, the CEO of the mining chamber of trade and industry admitted.


KHW coal group spends for trade unions nearly PLN 10m annually, JSW needs PLN 11m and KW PLN 20m. Coal mines cover costs of trade union offices and trade unionists' wages.

(PLN 1 = EUR 0.275)

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Podpis: MG