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Article

Производственные советы в России: баланс экономических и социальных прав

Лютов Н. Л.

The Labour Code of Russia was amended in 2013 in a way that a new body of workers’ representation – works councils – can be established. These amendments don’t add any new rights or obligations neither to employers nor to employees. They are made with purely political purposes and only imitate the creation of the analog of the well-known German system of works councils.

The author comes to conclusion that currently existing rights in informing and “taking into account” the workers’ representative body opinion, contained in the Russian Labour Code, are not sufficient for existence of the real industrial democracy. 

The article is aimed at answering the question, whether an implementation of functioning works councils may be beneficial to the adequate balancing of social rights of workers and economic rights of the employers.

Although the full transposition of the German works councils system seems to be impossible, some of its positive features may be effectively adopted in the Russian law. For example, the employer’s obligation to consult workers shouldn’t be dependent on the existence of the workers’ representative bodies. Besides, a range of issues that are subject to the mandatory informing of workers by the employer must be significantly broadened. The procedure of consultations must include the real negotiations between the employer and employees on the basis of good faith principle.