Lukashenko forces private businesses with a choice between the creation of trade unions or liquidation
Alexander Lukashenko instructed the chairman of the Federation of Trade Unions of Belarus, Mikhail Orda, to take care of the creation of trade union organizations at all private enterprises by the end of the year.
Lukashenko recalled that he had already agreed on this earlier and is waiting for the result by the end of 2020.
Lukashenko said that private business will have to choose between forming a trade union or liquidation.
A private company cannot be legally obliged to form a trade union
Can a private enterprise be obliged to form a trade union? OL asked such a question to lawyer Ilya Latyshev, director of the private enterprise Ilya Latyshev’s Legal Company.
According to the lawyer, this issue is not regulated by the law on trade unions at all. There are guidelines from the Federation of Trade Unions of Belarus on the creation of primary trade union organizations. They say that they are created by employees, not by the enterprise itself.
“Therefore, it is impossible to oblige a private company to create a primary trade union organization in it. But if there are employees who want to create a primary trade union organization, then the company cannot prohibit the exercise of this right,” says Latyshev.
The lawyer explains that the establishment of a primary trade union organization is regulated by the charter of the respective branch trade union. Usually, the required number of members is recruited, the meeting elects the head of the cell. Then, amendments are made to the charter of the respective trade union, the primary trade union organization is registered.
It is not necessary to create a primary organization in every company. People can simply join the ranks of any branch trade union.
Human rights activists believe that the investigation is illegally playing for time with cases of violence against protesters by security forces
Cancellation of the decision to refuse to initiate a criminal case on the fact of violence by law enforcement officers doesn’t mean that the case will be launched. The investigation is playing for time, human rights activists believe.
The first refusal in a case of this kind was received by ex-employee of the Ministry of Emergencies Yuri Krivoshey. The man’s car, where his wife and child were, was stopped in Logoisk on August 11. Krivoshey was taken to the police station and beaten on the way.
The Logoisk police gave him 10 days of arrest for disobeying police officers. Also, the man was fired from the Ministry of Emergencies. According to him, he didn’t participate in protest actions, and the reason for the arrest could have been his activity on social networks.
When he was released, Yuri appealed to the Investigative Committee with a statement to prosecute police officers. However, the investigator refused to open a criminal case.
The notification came to Yuri Krivoshey on November 5. Later the Office of the Investigative Committee for the Minsk region cancelled the decision to refuse to initiate a criminal case, and the materials were sent for revision, according to the “Legal Initiative”. As for the cancellation of the decision to refuse to initiate a criminal case, the investigation is only playing for time, human rights activists believe.
Human rights activists emphasize that the mere failure of the officials of the Investigative Committee to initiate criminal cases against the security officials and investigate the crimes committed by them is an evasion of their direct duties and can be qualified under the Criminal Code as an official’s inaction.
Businesses are assessing the risks of doing business in Belarus as extremely high
A survey of private companies conducted by the IPM Research Center contains unexpected conclusions. For example, despite the pandemic, businesses as a whole are positive about their current economic and financial situation. In particular, 36% and 39% of surveyed enterprises assess their economic and financial position as good or very good. At the same time, 21% and 25% find it bad or very bad, respectively.
However, the business is dominated by pessimistic expectations about their prospects. The share of those who expect deterioration in their economic situation was 48.5%. 14.6% of respondents expect improvement.
In particular, the companies surveyed expect a reduction in production/sales in the next two to three months. This is confirmed by 39% of respondents. 18% of enterprises, mainly industrialists, are counting on sales growth.
Construction companies that participated in the survey report that they are backed by orders for an average of four months. This volume of the order book corresponds to the normal for this time of year, but expectations for the future are negative.
Trade and service companies admit a slight decrease in sales over the past 2-3 months. And they believe that this intensifies competition. At the same time, companies expect a further decrease in sales and, accordingly, plan to reduce purchases from their suppliers.
The surveyed enterprises assess the current business environment in Belarus negatively. More than half of the respondents consider the existing risks of doing business to be prohibitively high (54%). The rest of the respondents called the current risks simply high (31%) or medium (14%). None of the business representatives interviewed assessed the risks as low.
The business considers macroeconomic instability and high uncertainty in the economic environment to be the most significant obstacles to the growth of business activity in Belarus. The disappearance of macroeconomic instability from the list of key barriers to business development was the most important result of the monetary policy of the current team of the National Bank, but first a pandemic, and then a political crisis that provoked a drop in confidence in the government in general and in the banking system in particular, returned this problem to the agenda, stated in the IPM review.