Executives from Wal-Mart have met with officials from the All-China Federation of Trade Unions (ACFTU) to discuss the introduction of unions into all the retailer's Chinese stores, the Wall Street Journal reported, citing people familiar with the matter. The talks, which involve senior personnel from both sides, come after unions sprung up in at least five Wal-Mart outlets in China over the last couple of weeks. The ACFTU has been trying to establish representation for Wal-Mart employees for quite some time but the retailer, which has no unionized stores in the US, has until now resisted. However, the ACFTU is seen by some labor advocates as a means of allowing the authorities to control workers and prevent the development of independent unions. The organization admits that its focus is on promoting strong employer-employee relations rather than using collective bargaining to defend workers' rights, as is the custom in the West.
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