Asia/Pacific Building Unions Seminar Sydney 2002

General Resolution of Unions from the Asia/Pacific Building Unions Seminar held in Sydney 18th-19th November 2002


This meeting of Asia/Pacific Building Unions commits to expanding co-operation between construction unions in the region.  We know this co-operation is an indispensable requirement to organising the construction workers of the region.


The effective regulation of the labour market is the best hope that construction workers of this region have of lifting their living standards and gaining access to decent standards of wages, safety and training on site on a day to day basis.  The strengthening of trade union organisation is the most effective way to ensure the regulation of the labour market.


We specifically reject false solutions which will cause further misery to construction workers, including:


  • leaving our members’ fate to the operation of the free market.
  • allowing the World Trade Organisation (WTO) and in particular its new General Agreement on Trade in Services (GATS) arrangements to organise the construction industry.
  • Allowing the constructions Multinationals to spread in an unregulated way across the region.


In the necessary fightback against big capital and its rules laid down by the WTO, World Bank and Asian Development Bank, we will not be fooled by the false solution of religious fundamentalism.  We specifically reject those who think religious fundamentalism and its sometimes partner terrorism, provides any answer to counter the economic and social injustice of the region.


We also reject the unbridled arrogance of some Western powers, particularly the United States of America and Britain, who believe they have the right to determine how the economic and social systems in this region will be conducted.


We also reject the militaristic aggression of the US Government with its determination to unilaterally intervene in Iraq.  Any outside intervention into Iraq must be strictly in accordance with the decisions of the United Nations.


The Asia/Pacific Building Unions who have adopted this resolution indicate that we believe our Seminar has been an outstanding success and commit ourselves to hold a further meeting within the next 18 months.