Greenland Business Association – at the forefront of change
Greenland Business Association (GE) has been representing the interests of business life in Greenland since 1966, and now counts around 350 companies with approximately 6,000 employees among its members, drawn from all business sectors in the country – from small and medium-sized companies to large firms that operate on the international markets. Overall, GE is organised under nine industry committees.
We are thus Greenland's principal trade organisation, as we represent both the vast majority of companies in the country and approximately 80% of Greenland’s overall business turnover. As a result, GE occupies a central position in the labour market, as well as in relation to the country's political leadership and public authorities.
GE has all of Greenland as its workplace, with the clear goal of creating the best possible framework for the business community. This means that membership of GE is the key to influencing business development, and provides direct access to a community of colleagues, which gives strength.
At the same time, GE acts as a knowledge centre with regard to the possibilities and conditions applying to the business community. The secretariat of GE is at your service with advice all year round – whether your questions concern small, practical issues, or problems of a more demanding legal or financial nature.
GE is in other words a modern organisation with member service, lobbying and consultancy as its central activities. But business development is also very much on our agenda. Business development, seen from a social perspective. For this reason, we organise a rising number of courses, conferences, information activities, study groups and delegations abroad.
Greenland's business life
Greenland is in the midst of a rapid phase of development, which in the coming years will set a whole new agenda for the business community. In addition to the traditional sectors such as fishing, export industries, trade, service, IT, media, hotel and tourism, contractors, building and construction, transportation and consultancy, new activities in the form of mineral exploration, mining, etc., are also on the rise.
GE’s four focus areas:
As an interest organisation, GE functions by influencing the political system to create the best environment for business life. This is done on the basis of GE's industrial policy action plan, in close dialogue with the public authorities. GE is for example currently represented on approximately twenty committees and boards under the government of Greenland, and we are a consulted party in the government’s work of preparing legislation.
As a service organisation, GE provides legal and financial advice to its member companies, and we compile sector-oriented statistical information and guidance material for relevant legislation, as required.
As an employers’ organisation, GE works to secure orderly relations in the labour market. This is done via a collective agreement and four subsidiary agreements with the trade union SIK. These agreements cover construction craftsmen, the commercial and office sector, the manufacturing sector, and the transport and service industries. Similarly, GE has a collective agreement with the Financial Services Union in Denmark covering the banking sector in Greenland.
Active business development in new industrial areas
GE has a duty to play an active role in relation to business development within both existing and new industries, including the mining and oil/gas industry and the production of Greenlandic foodstuffs. GE therefore works to collect and consolidate knowledge, and to establish networks and international contacts with experienced professionals and businesses. This is done in an effort to give Greenlandic companies the best possible preparation to meet future requirements.
GE’s structure: Industries and local associations
As a member of GE, you are associated with the organisation according to your industry:
• Construction craftsmen
• Contractors, production and Mineral Extractors
• Electricity, plumbing & heating
• IT, communication and media
• Service & transport
• Hotels, restaurants and tourism
• Fishing and export industries
• Technical consultants
Member companies are also associated with the organisation in a geographical sense, as GE has local branches in almost every town in Greenland, representing local business interests.
Each industry section is headed by an industry committee, consisting of 3-5 members elected by and from the industry members. The chairman of the industry committee is a member of the board of GE.
GE members can enter into networks across different industries and geographical locations in order to focus on specific areas. They can thereby secure informed debate and insight into current business conditions, and work to enhance these – both in relation to the public authorities and municipalities, and in the co-operation between industries.
Delegate meeting and board
In addition to the nine chairmen of the industry committees, the GE board consists of eight representatives from Greenland’s four municipalities (two from each), who are elected at the delegate meeting, by and from among the GE members in the individual municipalities.
The board chairman is directly elected by GE's supreme assembly, the delegate meeting, which meets every two years.
The board appoints a director who, together with a secretariat, handles all the above-mentioned tasks.
(Figure: GE organisation chart)
Ordinary membership of GE requires that the company is registered with a Greenlandic CVR number, and that the company’s management is physically located in Greenland. A basic membership fee is paid, plus a further payroll-dependent fee.
Organisations and international companies who do not meet the requirements for ordinary membership can join GE as associate members. This membership status was introduced in 2011 to secure the strongest possible international network. The membership fee is a fixed amount, as specified in the membership fee table.
Advantages of membership
All of GE's member companies have access to relevant legislation, collective agreements, clear guidelines, a forms service and a number of useful links via www.ga.gl.
Membership of GE also provides a range of concrete benefits in various areas, both via GE’s member companies in Greenland, and via GE's partners in Denmark.
GE's secretariat includes a number of consultants, who can offer:
· general information about business life in Greenland
· legal and financial advice
· analyses and statistical studies
· invitations to courses and conferences
· invitations to company visits and participation in Greenlandic business delegations
· news via e-mail and the members’ magazine Aurora
· information about CSR Greenland
The GE network – nationally and internationally
The GE network is a nationwide organisation in Greenland, but also includes partners outside Greenland, via whom we secure optimal and up-to-date service and advice for our member companies.
Our partners in Denmark include the Danish Construction Association, the Danish Chamber of Commerce, and HORESTA (the national trade association for the hotel, restaurant and tourism industry in Denmark).
GE is a member of the following international organisations and networks: PDAC, Offshore Center Danmark, MSC Fisheries.
GE acts as the secretariat for CSR Greenland, and provides advice to its members in relation to corporate social responsibility.
Greenland Business Association
Jens Kreutzmanipp Aqq. 3
+299 32 15 00
www.ge.ga.gl & firstname.lastname@example.org