China / Politics

Trial begins to elect trade union chiefs

By ZHENG CAIXIONG in Guangzhou ( Updated: 2013-01-15 18:59

Chairpersons of trade unions at local companies in Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong province, will be directly elected by workers this year, according to a senior trade union official from the southern metropolis.

Zhao Xiaosui, chairperson of the Guangzhou Federation of Trade Unions, said a pilot project will be tested this year, selecting eight to 10 companies to trial the new system.

Guangzhou has a large number of foreign-funded companies, joint ventures and private firms, and is expected to become the country's first city to have elected trade union officials, said Zhao, who is also deputy director of Guangzhou’s top legislative body.

The chairpersons of trade unions at local companies are usually appointed by government departments, or the chairman of board of their companies.

More than 85 percent of the companies in Guangzhou have established trade unions, which have played an increasingly important role in protecting workers’ interest, Zhao said.

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