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Response from Central Chamber of Commerce Board to CEO and AKT Social Media Dispute.

On Monday, the Central Chamber of Commerce made a statement about the labor market situation in response to a message from Juho Romakkaniemi, CEO of the organization, that had caused controversy with the AKT union. This move was unusual for the Central Chamber of Commerce as they typically remain silent in labor market disputes. The statement addressed the crisis-ridden labor market situation following Romakkaniemi’s message, which urged SAK members to resign from their union and join the General Unemployment Fund instead.

The disagreement began when Ismo Kokko of the AKT union announced the termination of banking cooperation with the OP Group, where Romakkaniemi is connected as CEO. Kokko suggested that Romakkaniemi was being instructed by Timo Ritakallio, CEO of OP Group and chairman of Central Chamber of Commerce.

The board emphasized that employees have statutory rights and freedoms to decide whether or not to join unions and stressed the need for a culture of agreement in future labor disputes. The statement did not directly address social media dispute between Romakkaniemi and Kokko but indicated a desire to move labor disputes forward in a constructive way for Finnish economy.

Central Chamber of Commerce Chairman Timo Ritakallio commented on the situation highlighting importance of finding solution that builds trust in Finnish labor market and supports economic growth. He emphasized on need for both perspectives to be considered in order to create a more stable future. Juho Romakkaniemi has been CEO of Central Chamber since 2017 and has been working towards increasing role organization in social debates and change public image during his tenure.

By Samantha Jones

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