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Business, Labor, Government Advance On Zimbabwean Social Pact


Representatives of business, labor and government met in Harare on Monday within the scope of the so-called tripartite negotiating forum to push ahead on drafting the terms of a social contract aimed at mitigating the country's deep economic crisis.

The social partners had aimed to finalize three protocols: one for the stabilization of incomes and prices, another for the "restoration of production viability," and a third to increase the availability of foreign exchange to businesses. But the currency protocol could not be taken up as the Reserve Bank was not represented, sources said.

Last week, the Employers Confederation of Zimbabwe, the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions and the government failed to conclude an agreement on incomes and prices, which labor had insited must be in place to take up the other protocols.

Employers Confederation of Zimbabwe Director John Mufukare told reporter Jonga Kandemiiri of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that business accepts the principle that it must pay workers a living wage, and is looking at how to sustain this.

Labor representative Godfrey Kanyenze, an economist, said that for industries to be viable, issues of governance and political risk must be addressed.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...

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