World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

Trade unions successfully resist World Bank, IMF

Trade unions successfully resist the World Bank and the IMF

Brussels: Amidst growing consensus within global civil society that the World Bank and the IMF do not address public concerns when demanding that governments implement major economic policy changes, the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (ICFTU) today released a new report, Fighting for Alternatives: Case Studies of Successful Trade Union Resistance to the Policies of the World Bank and IMF. The report was released to coincide with the 2006 Spring Meetings of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund in Washington, to be held on April 22-24.

According to the ICFTU report, trade unions and their civil society allies in Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America have organized workers to defeat World Bank and IMF-sponsored initiatives such as the privatization of essential services, transport restructuring, and labour market reform. "The successful resistance by trade unions against the World Bank and the IMF shows that the labour movement is a strong and efficient tool in the fight against poverty and for the security of workers' livelihoods" said Guy Ryder, General Secretary of the ICFTU.

In many of the cases presented in the report, trade unions and their allies not only succeeded in reversing these initiatives, but also in obtaining alternative policies that took account of their concerns.

Based on interviews with union leaders and on other first-hand accounts of trade union campaigns, the new report presents detailed case studies of popular campaigns against IMF and World Bank initiatives and the successful adoption of alternative policies in countries including:

* Bulgaria, where unions organized a national mobilization that led to the overturn of a World Bank education sector restructuring programme and an IMF proposal that would have reduced workers' wages;

* Croatia, where five labour federations set aside their differences to rally opposition to an IMF-World Bank proposal for labour reform designed to make it easier for employers to fire workers;

* Indonesia, where the nation's constitutional court ruled against the IMF-backed privatization of a major utility after labour unions and civil society groups filed a lawsuit contesting the government's right to privatize the utility;

* Uruguay, where trade unions took the lead in organizing a historic national referendum against water privatization;

* Zambia, where unions and their allies forced the IMF to rescind debt relief conditions that required privatization of strategic public enterprises and prohibited the hiring of new teachers.

The report also looks at the efforts of the international trade union movement and its allies around the world to push the IMF and World Bank to adopt more favourable policies towards working people and the poor, which have lead to important changes in these institutions' policies on core labour standards and debt relief for impoverished countries.

The ICFTU report is now available for download on the ICFTU website:

http://www.icftu.org/displaydocument.asp?Index=991223658&Language=EN.

The ICFTU represents 155 million workers in 236 affiliated organisations in 154 countries and territories. http://www.icftu.org/ ICFTU is also a partner in Global Unions. http://www.global-unions.org/

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: Is This Guy The World’s Most Dangerous Thirtysomething?

Saudi Arabia has long been regarded as a pillar of stability in the Middle East, and is the essential caterer to the West’s fossil fuel needs. It is also the country that gave us Osama Bin Laden, al Qaeda, and 15 of the 19 terrorists who carried out the 9/11 attacks... More>>

ALSO:

Non-Binding Postal Vote: Australia Says Yes To Same Sex Marriage

Binoy Kampmark: Out of 150 federal seats, 133 registered affirmative totals in returning their response to the question “Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?”. More>>

ALSO:

Bonn Climate Change Conference: Protecting Health In Small Island States

The vision is that, by 2030, all Small Island Developing States will have health systems that are resilient to climate change and countries around the world will be reducing their carbon emissions both to protect the most vulnerable from climate risks and deliver large health benefits in carbon-emitting countries. More>>

ALSO:

Camp Shut Down: Refugees Must Be Rescued From Manus

On 31st October 2017, the detention centre on Manus Island in which the Australian Government has been holding more than 700 refugees was closed, leaving those living there in a desperate situation. More>>

ALSO:

EARLIER:

Rohingya Muslims Massacred: Restrictions On Aid Put 1000s At Risk

Amnesty: The Myanmar authorities’ restrictions on international aid in Rakhine state is putting tens of thousands of lives at risk in a region where mainly Rohingya people are already suffering horrific abuses from a disproportionate military campaign. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 
 
  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC