Labour unions and financial inclusion in South Africa

Labour unions and financial inclusion in South Africa

June 19, 2017 •

Labour unions play a critical role in improving the well-being of their members through promoting their rights in the workplace. As an organising entity with bargaining power, access to a typically low-income membership-base, footprint and in some instances, significant financial resources at their disposal, unions are well placed to facilitate access to financial services to their members.

The ILO study finds that labour unions have played a substantial role in promoting access to financial services in South Africa. This is partly due to the unique regulatory and structural position of labour unions in South Africa; however, many challenges and opportunities faced by South African labour unions are shared with labour unions across the world. Labour unions that effectively deal with these challenges and harness these opportunities could play a significant role in improving financial inclusion.

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