Slovakia - Labor

As of 1999, there were about three million members of the Slovak workforce. Of those employed, about 9% were in agriculture; 29% in industry; 8% in construction; 8% in commerce, and the remainder in other sectors. Unemployment was 17.2% in 2002.

Unions are freely allowed to organize in Slovakia as well as engage in collective bargaining. Strikes are legal only if they meet certain stringent requirements. About 45% of the workforce was unionized in 2002.

Children may not work until the age of 15. After age 16, minors may work without restrictions as to hours or condition of work. These provisions are effectively enforced by the government. The minimum wage was $105 per month in 2002. The standard workweek was 42.5 hours, although under collective bargaining agreements, many workweeks are 40 hours. The government sets minimum occupational health and safety standards and it effectively monitors them.

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