Key priorities and stronger cooperation among unions in countries of destination and countries of origin in implementing focused activities set the tone of the five-day Follow-up Training on Strengthening Joint Union Actions on Decent Work for Migrant Workers on 8-12 May 2017 in Bangkok, Thailand.

In the opening session, Mr. Henry Cunningham, Programme Manager of Workers Activities at the International Training Centre of the ILO (ITCILO), stressed the relevance of setting priorities and strengthening coordination and cooperation to deliver results. Mr. Steven Tang, who is in-charge of the Asia-Pacific affairs of the All China Federation of Trade Unions (ACFTU), shared their ongoing cooperation with the ITCILO, including in expanding social protection to migrant workers.

In his remarks, Mr. Maung Maung representing the ASEAN Trade Union Council (AseanTUC) emphasised the need for a trade union unified agenda on labour migration and implementing focused activities. Mr. Laxman Basnet, South Asia Regional Trade Union Confederation (SARTUC) General Secretary, called for strengthening workers voice in labour migration in cooperation with the sub regional trade union organisations from Africa and Latin America. Mr. Mohammad Mazen Al-Maita representing the Arab Trade Union Confederation (ArabTUC) challenged the participants to put plans into actions.

Mr. Shoya Yoshida, ITUC-AP General Secretary

Mr. Shoya Yoshida, ITUC-AP General Secretary

In his keynote session, Mr. Shoya Yoshida, International Trade Union Confederation – Asia Pacific (ITUC-AP) General Secretary, pointed out the importance of migration as a labour issue and the need to strengthen cooperation between unions in origin and destination countries.

He reiterated the commitment of ITUC-AP in promoting partnership among ArabTUC, SARTUC and AseanTUC.

Focal points for migrant labour from AseanTUC and representatives of ArabTUC and SARTUC drafted a work plan in a series of workshops including a SWOT analysis of implementing the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) among the three organisations.

The ITCILO/Bureau for Workers’ Activities of the ILO (ACTRAV) with contributions from ACFTU sponsored the activity as follow up to the training of focal points in Manila in December 2016.