Russia: BWI and RBWU sign cooperation agreement with FIFA for Russia 2018

08 September 2016 11:06

FIFA, the Local Organising Committee (LOC), the Building and Wood Workers' International (BWI), and the Russian Construction Workers Union (RBWU) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to collaborate in ensuring decent and safe working conditions for the construction and renovation of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ stadiums. The first joint meeting of all parties to develop a work plan to implement the MoU is taking place in Moscow today. 

Among the concrete measures that have been agreed to support the monitoring system implemented by FIFA and the LOC, the BWI and RBWU will cooperate on the visits of 2018 FIFA World Cup stadium construction sites. The signatories to the agreement will also facilitate the negotiations to address and resolve workers’ complaints on serious violations of decent working conditions. 

“As we are strengthening our approach towards safeguarding human and labour rights, the collaboration with independent stakeholders is of key importance. The signature of this MoU marks a significant step towards bringing on board important partners such as trade unions and working together to ensure decent and safe working conditions at FIFA World Cup stadium construction sites in Russia,” said FIFA’s Head of Sustainability, Federico Addiechi. 

“In September 2015, the LOC and FIFA set up monitoring systems relating to the working conditions at 2018 FIFA World Cup stadiums. One year later, we have completed two rounds of visits to all stadiums under construction or renovation. We are delighted to announce this partnership with the BWI and RBWU today, which will bring us additional tools and best practices to monitor the labour conditions at construction sites for the 2018 FIFA World Cup,” said Milana Verkhunova, the LOC’s Head of Sustainability


FIFA and the LOC conducted an initial visit for the monitoring of labour conditions in St Petersburg in February 2016 and two months later launched a system to monitor working conditions at ten World Cup stadiums either under construction or renovation together with the Klinsky Institute of Labour Protection and Working Conditions. The second round of evaluation visits has just concluded, with the experts analysing working conditions for approximately 9,000 workers employed at construction sites by more than 100 construction companies. 

“The MoU is an important step forward to ensure decent work and safe working conditions for all construction workers working at 2018 FIFA World Cup stadium construction sites. We hope it will lead to a fall in the incidents of worker rights violations that we have witnessed in recent months. The BWI will work closely with the RBWU, FIFA, and the LOC to implement the MoU so that the lives of workers on the ground can improve,” said BWI General Secretary Ambet Yuson.

“I cannot stress enough the importance of the event in which we are engaged today. It is vital to the RBWU that all of the signatories to the memorandum are taking responsibility for its implementation, which should ensure that there are no more deaths and that there are decent wages paid on time, labour contracts with all employees, and decent working and living conditions for all workers, including migrants," said RBWU Chairman Boris Sochenko.