Collective bargaining is a process of bargaining between employers and a group of workers who aim to regulate wages, working conditions, benefits and other aspects of workers` compensation and workers` rights. The interests of workers are generally represented by representatives of a union to which the workers belong. Collective agreements concluded in these negotiations generally define the size of wages, working time, training, health and safety, overtime, claim mechanisms and rights to participate in professional or professional affairs.  The aim of the negotiations is to reach an agreement. Negotiations should not be confused with “consultation,” which is just an exchange of views between workers and their employer. However, skilled negotiators can turn consultation into negotiation. Collective agreements are signed for certain periods, usually two to four years. A collective agreement is mandatory for both the employers` organization and its members, the union and its members, on the other. In addition, a collective agreement is generally also in practice, if not theoretically, for individual non-unionized workers and unionized workers who belong to a union other than the union that are part of the collective agreement, provided that (i) the worker works with collective agreement tasks and (ii) that the union to which the worker is affiliated is not bound by another collective agreement with the employer. The ILO MNE statement encourages governments in countries of origin and host countries to encourage collective bargaining between multinational companies and their workers: “Governments, particularly in developing countries, should strive to take appropriate measures to ensure that lower income groups and less developed regions benefit as much as possible from the activities of multinationals.”  The MNE statement also states that “measures adapted to national conditions should be taken, if necessary, to promote and encourage the full development and use of voluntary bargaining mechanisms between employers or employers` organisations and workers` organisations to regulate employment conditions through collective agreements.”  However, the existence of freedom of association does not necessarily mean that trade unions are automatically recognized for bargaining purposes. In particular, in systems where there are a large number of unions, pre-defined objective criteria are needed within the framework of the labour relations system to decide when and how a union should be recognized for collective bargaining. In the United States, the National Labor Relations Act (1935) covers most collective agreements in the private sector. The Act makes it illegal for employers to discriminate, spy, harass or terminate workers because of their union membership or to retaliate for organizing campaigns or other “concerted activities,” creating business unions or refusing to engage in collective bargaining with the union that represents their employees.