Walvis Bay – The Namibia Seamen and Allied Workers Union (NASAWU) signed a Recognition and Procedural Agreement with Etosha Fishing Corporation on Tuesday, which recognises it as the exclusive bargaining agent on behalf of the employees.

“We have managed to negotiate terms that will cement and support a mutually beneficial working relationship between all concerned, benefiting both enterprise and the people who make our success possible – our workers,” said Etosha Fishing MD Pieter Greeff at the signing ceremony. He added that the company has taken further progressive steps by including categories of previously excluded employment groups into the bargaining unit, to create a truly sustainable workforce for the future.

In recent times NASAWU secured majority representation of Etosha Fishing’s land-based employees. Already being recognised as the exclusive bargaining agent for its seagoing personnel, the signing of the Recognition and Procedural Agreement, which lays down the basis of the relationship between the parties, concludes negotiations in terms of the Labour Act (11 of 2007).

“It is a great accomplishment for the company through this agreement with NASAWU to show our dedication to a cohesive and sustainable working environment. It is necessary to forge and build strong relationships to support our place within the fishing industry, and the immense contribution it makes to the economy overall,” Greeff noted.
“We look forward to a strong and inclusive relationship with the Union, and to honour the employees’ right to freedom of association, but more so, to set a benchmark in the industry through our commitment to sound labour relations,” he added.

The fishing industry currently employs over ten thousand Namibians, most of whom are employed on a permanent basis, whilst others are seasonal workers depending on species allocated to each operating entity, as well as to some extent others who are employed on a temporary basis.

Since its establishment, Etosha Fishing Corporation has contributed immensely to the Namibian economy. The company is a leading player in the Namibian fishing industry and considered to be one of the foremost round can production facilities in the world. It is the Namibian home of the iconic Lucky Star canned pilchard brand and also spearheaded value addition to Namibia’s own horse mackerel through the introduction of its very successful Efuta Maasbanker brand.

As an employer within the fishing industry Etosha Fishing has various social responsibility programmes aimed at promoting and uplifting underprivileged and disadvantaged communities in which it operates. Apart from pro-actively seeking to positively manage its employee relations, the company also aims to ensure a progressive and viable economy and future in everything it does.

“The signing of the Recognition Agreement is of great benefit to us; to honour the employees’ right to freedom of association but more so, to have the input and assistance of an esteemed Union such as NASAWU, to volunteer their experience and assisting both the workforce and ourselves in building even closer bonds with our employees. We envisage a programme that would now also directly benefit the employees, to build on our commitment to Namibians benefiting from the natural resources of our beautiful country,” Greeff concluded.


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