OECD gives WorkChoices the 'thumbs up', says ACCI


OECD gives WorkChoices the 'thumbs up', says ACCI

Contrary to union claims, the OECD is a strong supporter of the Federal Government's WorkChoices legislation, according to an employers' organisation.


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Contrary to union claims, the OECD is a strong supporter of the Federal Government's WorkChoices legislation, according to an employers' organisation.

The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI), said yesterday's OECD Economic Survey for Australia 'blows a big hole in union criticism of WorkChoices'. ACCI chief executive Peter Hendy said the OECD has specifically examined WorkChoices against international norms for economic development and job creation.

'It gives WorkChoices the thumbs up', he said, quoting the report as saying: 'the industrial relations reforms are a step in the right direction with benefits likely to surface gradually over the coming years'.

WorkChoices 'too cautious'

'If anything, the OECD says that WorkChoices is too cautious: "there is considerable room for further simplification that would leave more room for bargaining over workplace conditions".

'Australia needs a boost in productivity and the OECD report tells us how - "by upskilling the workforce and by taking advantage of the reformed framework for industrial relations".'

Hendy said the union movement has been 'caught out' by the OECD, making the following points:

  • Unions say WorkChoices won't lift productivity. The OECD says 'increasing scope for direct negotiations has probably also helped to raise productivity' (page 121);
  • Unions say WorkChoices won't be good for working people. The OECD says that reforms like WorkChoices 'have also boosted productivity, with living standards steadily catching up with the best performing countries' (policy brief page 1);
  • Unions say WorkChoices leaves working people with few employment rights. The OECD says that it 'will keep fairly generous working conditions' (page 125); and
  • Unions say WorkChoices will create conflict. The OECD says that 'the greater take up of bargaining has gone hand in hand with a marked decrease in the number of labour disputes' (page 120).


'Two weeks ago the labour movement (mis)used an earlier OECD report (not specific to Australia) to criticise WorkChoices,' Hendy said. '[This] OECD report, specific to Australia, highlights just how misleading the union campaign against WorkChoices really is.'


OECD says WorkChoices will be all pain and no gain, claims Labor

Upcoming workshops and conferences - Workplace Research Centre

The Workplace Research Centre will hold a number of workshops and conferences over August - September and December. An outline of these events is set-out below. See this website for details.

10 August 2006 - 13th Annual Labour Law Conference: WorkChoices: what’s happened so far? – Crowne Plaza Darling Harbour - Sydney

22-23 August, 21-22 November - Essential Employee Relations – Sydney Darlington Centre, The University of Sydney. This 2 day course is aimed at the NEW HR/ER practitioners and line managers.

WorkChoices: Navigating the transition in your state, HR/ER Update and Agreements Briefings -

24 August - Brisbane Sofitel Brisbane
28 August - Adelaide Mercure Grosvenor Hotel Adelaide
14 September - Melbourne Crown Plaza Melbourne
15 September - Canberra National Convention Centre, Canberra
21 September - Sydney Crowne Plaza Darling Harbour

7 September - Breakfast Briefing Independent Contractors - Wesley Conference Centre, Sydney

26 - 27 September 2006 - Introduction to HRM: 2 Day Course - Darlington Centre, The University of Sydney. This comprehensive and practical 2 day course is designed to help new managers who do not have an HR background understand the concept of Human Resource Management and how it affects their role.

7 December - Breakfast Briefings 2006: Unfair Dismissals - Wesley Conference Centre, Sydney




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