Official signing of an agreement on workers’ rights between Building and Wood Workers’ International (BWI), Qatari Diar VINCI Construction (QDVC) and VINCI: a world premiere on these issues in Qatar
21 November 2017 - 11:55 am - Sustainable development - Qatar
Resulting from discussions that began in December 2014, the Building and Wood Workers’ International (BWI), a global union federation signed today an agreement with QDVC (a Qatari shareholding company with two shareholders: Qatari Diar Real Estate Investments Company and VINCI Construction Grands Projets) and VINCI, a French-based global player in concessions and construction.
The agreement was officially signed in Geneva in Switzerland at the International Labour organisation (ILO) headquarters by BWI’s General Secretary, Ambet Yuson, VINCI’S Human Resources Director, Franck Mougin and QDVC’S CEO, Philippe Tavernier.
The signing took place in the presence of Guy Ryder, Director General of the ILO.
The agreement signed today covers human rights at work, accommodations, and issues related to fair recruitment and employment rights of workers. It applies to all workers employed by QDVC in Qatar, and includes due diligence with sub-contractors. This agreement is the first of its kind in Qatar between a union federation and a Qatari company. The agreement includes an extensive system of follow-up, reporting, monitoring, inspection, and auditing under the authority of a reference group composed of representatives of the three parties. All aspects of the implementation of the agreement will be reviewed by the parties.
At the beginning of November, during the 331st session of the ILO Governing Body, the ILO and the Government of Qatar signed a 3-year technical cooperation agreement to ensure, for all workers, the respect of the fundamental principles and rights at work.
BWI General Secretary Ambet Yuson said: “This agreement with QDVC and VINCI, which complements and builds on our productive cooperation with the Steering Committee on Delivery and Legacy, is a major step towards the full respect of workers’ rights in Qatar. We look forward to working with QDVC and VINCI in our ongoing efforts to improve the working and living conditions of migrant construction workers in Qatar. As the text of the agreement indicates, it is ‘founded on the shared belief that all construction workers should be treated with dignity, and live and work in decent and safe conditions.”
VINCI Human Resources Director, Franck Mougin said: “This agreement is a major new step which highlights our long-standing involvement on workers’ rights in Qatar. Since 2009, VINCI has a pro-active approach towards fostering better working and living conditions for workers in Qatar. This agreement is unique of its kind because it is concrete and fully operational with specific commitments on various topics related to workers’ rights, safety and welfare. It is the concrete result of VINCI and QDVC past commitments on these topics with BWI as a key, major and reliable partner and should serve as an example for the construction industry.”
QDVC CEO, Philippe Tavernier said: “The agreement formalizes the numerous initiatives undertaken by QDVC since its creation to improve labour recruitment practices, working conditions, accommodation, employment rights and grievance mechanisms. It affirms our intention to be fully collaborative and transparent and provides a tangible sign of our commitment to achieve the objectives set in the Qatar National Vision 2030 and the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights publicly endorsed by the State of Qatar.”
QDVC is a Qatari shareholding design and build engineering & Construction Company of international expertise which undertakes large complex projects fostering innovation embracing new technologies and making a difference with clients, partners and employees. Having been incorporated under the Qatari law since April 2007, QDVC stems from the association of : Qatari Diar Real Estate Investments Company (51%) & VINCI Construction Grands Projets (49%). We aim at being a socially responsible leader, mindful of the economic, social, human and environmental objectives towards Qatar National Vision 2030.
At its World Congress in Buenos Aires, on 9 December 2005, the International Federation of Building and Wood Workers (IFBWW) and the World Federation of Building and Wood Workers (WFBW) created a new global union federation, the Building and Wood Workers' International - BWI. The BWI is the Global Union Federation grouping free and democratic unions with members in the Building, Building Materials, Wood, Forestry and Allied sectors. The BWI groups together around 334 trade unions representing around 12 million members in 130 countries. The Headquarters is in Geneva, Switzerland. Regional Offices and Project Offices are located in Panama and Malaysia, South Africa, India, Burkina Faso, Chile, Kenya, Russia, Peru and Brazil. Our mission is to promote the development of trade unions in our sectors throughout the world and to promote and enforce workers rights in the context of sustainable development.
VINCI is a global player in concessions and contracting, employing close to 195,000 people in some 100 countries. We design, finance, build and operate infrastructure and facilities that help improve daily life and mobility for all. Because we believe in all-round performance, above and beyond economic and financial results, we are committed to operating in an environmentally and socially responsible manner. And because our projects are in the public interest, we consider that reaching out to all our stakeholders and engaging in dialogue with them is essential in the conduct of our business activities. VINCI’s goal is to create long-term value for its customers, shareholders, employees, and partners and for society at large.