Collective bargaining and labour relations

Collective bargaining is a fundamental right. It is rooted in the ILO Constitution and reaffirmed as such in the 1998 ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work. Collective bargaining is a key means through which employers and their organizations and trade unions can establish fair wages and working conditions. It also provides the basis for sound labour relations. Typical issues on the bargaining agenda include wages, working time, training, occupational health and safety and equal treatment. The objective of these negotiations is to arrive at a collective agreement that regulates terms and conditions of employment. Collective agreements may also address the rights and responsibilities of the parties thus ensuring harmonious and productive industries and workplaces. Enhancing the inclusiveness of collective bargaining and collective agreements is a key means for reducing inequality and extending labour protection.


  1. Blogs

  2. Infostory

    Can collective bargaining create a fairer economy? Explore this InfoStory to discover the impact of collective bargaining on the economy, businesses and working lives.

What's new

  1. Future of work

    Nordic countries an inspiration for the ILO

    04 April 2019

  2. Highlights and Insights from the ILO project

    Promoting Decent Work in Garment Sector Global Supply Chains

    02 April 2019

  3. The Global Deal for Decent Work and Inclusive Growth - Thematic Brief

    The Contribution of Social Dialogue to Gender Equality

    29 March 2019


  1. Book

    Collective Agreements: Extending Labour Protection

    How can the extension of collective agreements and its use as a policy tool expand the coverage of labour protection & shore up collective bargaining?

  2. Global partnership

    The Global Deal

    Jointly addresses the challenges in the global labour market & enables all people to benefit from globalisation.

  3. Book

    Industrial Relations in Emerging Economies: the Quest for Inclusive Development

    Industrial & employment relations in the emerging economies of Brazil, China, India, South Africa and Turkey, & contribution of industrial relations to inclusive development.