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During a round-table meeting in Skopje, Macedonia, FWF has presented initial data from a living wage project which explores the link between wages and productivity. One of the key conclusions reached in Skopje is that increasing productivity could potentially absorb part of the costs for increasing wages.
At six Macedonian factories supplying FWF affiliates, FWF is testing the assumption that good working conditions and decent wages result in greater motivation and satisfaction of workers, which has a positive impact on productivity. FWF has conducted productivity assessments to identify the most important productivity factors that keep wages low. The results will show possibilities for improving productivity while at the same time increasing wage levels.
But in order to ensure sustainable improvements, other measures are needed as well. Social dialogue needs to be improved at national level, factories should invest in stronger human resource management and adjustments to margins and FOB prices should be investigated by FWF’s member companies.
The round table was attended by high level representatives of employers, unions, the government, FWF affiliates and factory managers. They reaffirmed their commitment to work on implementing the recommendations. FWF continues the project with support of Dutch trade union CNV International until the end of 2013.