Apparel Sourcing Intelligence - Worldwide

Ethiopian unions welcome German buyers’ help in pushing garment wages up.

Following pressure from Germany’s Tchibo, an Ethiopian labour union “won a 25-percent wage increase in a collective bargaining agreement” in 2014 from its then $33 a month wages at the country’s largest textile business, Turkish-owned Ayka Addis.

But although Ethiopia’s constitution guarantees workers the right to associate, most factories do not have trade unions and ¬†“If the business owners refuse, there is not much we can do,” said ¬†Angesom Gebre Yohannes from the Industrial Federation of Ethiopian Textile, Leather and Garment Worker Trade Unions. “The law is there, but the struggle to implement it is left up to us and the workers.”