Employment Relations Between Japan & Singapore

2663 Words Sep 7th, 2009 11 Pages
This essay aims to compare the industrial relations in both Singapore and Japan. It will first indentify both countries industrial relation system, whether it is unitarist, pluralist or radical. It will then touch on the various aspects in the industrial relation system: trade unions, system to resolving industrial conflicts, wages related policies and discrimination at work. In addition, it will look at the policy of lifetime employment and seniority in wages, policies which Japan companies have been well-known for adopting. This essay will then conclude and summary, to what extend are both system similar or different, after comparing the various aspects as listed above.

Industrial relations refer to the relationship between employers,
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Rengo’s affiliations are mostly trade unions of large corporations, or trade unions of medium and small enterprises. Zenroren’s affiliations, on the other hand, are mostly small trade unions in large firms or trade unions in small and medium enterprises (Aida 2002). Each of these national trade union centres comprises of different members, thus their focus on protecting the interest of their members can be quite different.

Despite the harmonious nature of Japanese people, there are still conflicts that cannot be resolved within the enterprise union and the firm. Most of these unresolved conflicts occur because many firms are conducting restructuring and retrenchment during this period of economic uncertainty. When these conflicts happen, they can approach the local government mediation body to help conciliate and make a decision. Most decisions made are generally accepted; however, should the conflicts still exist, they can opt for arbitration in the Labour Tribunal System, or legislation in court. For arbitration, the judges involved are tripartite in nature: 1 professional judge, 1 union representative and 1 employer representative. All 3 judges must have professional knowledge and experience in labour issues, and there are no more than 3 hearings, verdict based on majority. If the verdict is rejected by either party, they may proceed to legislation (Elbo 2004).

Singapore employs a very
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