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Fujitsu Services said yesterday that it has settled its long-running row with Manchester-based employees over redundancy rights, union recognition and better pay.

According to Unite, the union that represents Fujitsu workers, its members voted 99.6 per cent on an 89.2 per cent turnout in favour of ending the dispute.

This followed new agreements from Fujitsu in which it promised to cover union recognition, redundancy and redeployment rights, pay and benefits.

Fujitsu's decision to respond positively to criticism levelled at it from disgruntled staff could see more than 1,000 workers at the IT services firm's Central Park site benefit from the agreement, said Unite in a statement.

The dispute had rumbled on for more than a year as strike action and several breakdowns in negotiations between the two sides pushed aside any chance of a quick settlement.

Unite's North West regional secretary Laurence Faircloth said:

"Our members are pleased that so many issues have been successfully resolved to end the dispute. We now hope to build a much better working relationship with Fujitsu."

Under the agreement, Fujitsu has agreed to allow Unite access to sites where there is currently no union recognition. It also set up a so-called Learning Partnership Agreement which should help improve training and development for Manchester employees.

A Fujitsu spokesperson said:

"I am delighted that we have put this dispute behind us and can now go on to develop a relationship with Unite in Manchester that will be of benefit to our employees, our customers and the company as a whole." ®

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