Aqaba Meeting a Success

The ITF Dockers Global GNT Seminar convened in Aqaba, Jordan from 12 - 14 March 2012, including union affiliate attendees from the Netherlands, Belgium, Denmark, United Kingdom,Morocco, Lebanon, Bahrain, Algeria, Libya, Egypt, Jordan, Yemen, Singapore,India Hong Kong, Malaysia, Philippines, Australia, South Africa, Kenya, Ghana, Costa Rica and Germany.

Assistant National Secretary Warren Smith reports that the International Transport Workers' Federation Dockers Section Global Network Terminals Seminar in Aqaba was a great success.

The conference heard reports about the many struggles by organised labour in the maritime industry worldwide and it was pleasing to see the high number of delegations from Africa and the Middle East participating.

Out of those reports, plans were formulated to strengthen international networking based on the right to organise and collectively bargain.

The conference further covered key topics including international solidarity and the use of automation as an employer and anti-union strategy to remove strong unions from the stevedoring industry.

Particular attention was given to thecurrent Port of Auckland dispute, with affiliates given clear campaign goals at the conclusion of the conference.

There were also sessions on the finance of ports, ownership structure of DP World and developments of affiliates' capacity in the Arab world, including Arab spring countries, Libya, Yemen, Syria and Egypt.

The conference agreed to establish a working group on global framework agreements with minimum acceptable standards.

The conference also agreed to set up an automation task force and prepare a position paper for next year's Dockers Section Meeting.