Promoting decent work and labor relations based on social partnership are key values for our work around the globe and at the center of our activities in Ethiopia. The relationship between employers and employees and the political decisions and laws that affect it has been part of FES’s office pursuit in Ethiopia since its establishment in 1992. Based on the values of solidarity, our work focuses on the promotion of social justice and in empowering trade unions to contribute their part and share to this challenge in line with their mandate.
The advancement of decent work and socio-economic transformation goes hand in hand for Ethiopia to achieve and sustain its national development strategy that it has undertaken. Despite rapid economic growth rates in the last decade, multi-dimensional poverty in Ethiopia remains high. In addition, Ethiopian has experienced high and sustained inflation rates over the past years which many experts view as threatening the sustainability of Ethiopia’s economic progress. In September 2019, the government of Ethiopia came up with an economic transformation agenda to turn the overall positive economic figures into broad-based, inclusive, and sustainable economic growth that is beneficial to all members of society. This ambitious reform plan means to leverage the achievements of the past, address newly emerging challenges, create new opportunities, and upgrade policy and institutional frameworks to find a home-grown solution from within Ethiopia to lift past successes to the next level.
In its support to an economically just and inclusive development, FES provides support to and works closely with different partners organisations. We work with academia, think tanks and individuals in analyzing social, labour and economic policy and improving the tripartite dialogue between employers, employees, and the state. We also cooperate with regional and international organizations that aspire to cooperate on these issues and bring our international networks and expertise to the table in deepening the agenda for social justice and global solidarity in support of the economic transformation agenda and strategies hereto of the Ethiopian Government. Besides working with responsible government bodies, FES works closely with the Confederation of Ethiopian Trade Unions (CETU), which coordinates and leads the trade union movement in Ethiopia. In its partnership, FES provides support to Trade Unions in their efforts to cope and actively respond to the challenges posed by the current global economic order and to contribute to the discussion on economic reforms at home.