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Indonesia: Proposed Labour Laws'd Weaken Rights

Indonesia: Proposed Labour Laws Would Seriously Weaken Rights and Conditions

Brussels (ICFTU OnLine): The ICFTU has written to Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono (http://www.icftu.org/displaydocument.asp?Index=991223606&Language=EN) calling on him not to proceed with proposed labour law amendments which would have serious negative impacts on the country's workforce.

The proposed amendments to Labour Law No 13/2003 include weakening of minimum wage provisions, restrictions on the right to strike, reduced entitlements to severance pay for retrenched workers and increased possibilities for employers to impose disciplinary measures on workers.

The ICFTU-affiliated Indonesian Trade Union Congress (ITUC) has described the measures as a "race to the bottom" in order to attract foreign investment. The 2003 Law already contained provisions to extend contract labour at the expense of permanent employment, which the government promised would lead to growth in investment and employment.

Yet the ITUC notes that these extra jobs have simply not materialised, while growing numbers of workers now face insecurity and exploitation.

The ITUC Executive Board has decided to implement a national action plan against the new laws, and has withdrawn its representatives from the national tripartite labour body in protest at the government's plans.

The ICFTU and its Regional Organisation ICFTU-APRO have pledged their support to the ITUC campaign to stop the amendments being adopted and ensure respect for the fundamental rights of Indonesia's working people.

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