Global Conference Puts Workers’ Capital in Spotlight

A global conference looking at the issues, implications and next steps around the workers’ capital agenda is being hosted by the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) this week.

Pressing Forward: Putting the Workers Capital Agenda to Action, running from 7-8 September, has been organised by the Global Unions Committee on Workers’ Capital (CWC), a joint initiative of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), the Trade Union Advisory Committee of the OECD (TUAC) and the Global Union Federations (GUFs).

The annual workers’ capital conference is the premier forum for international collaboration and dialogue between trade unions and pension fund trustees on the stewardship of workers’ retirement funds – equal to USD32 trillion or 84 percent of global GDP – to promote decent work, a sustainable future and secure retirement for workers.

Union trustees from some of the biggest funds in the world are attending.

ITF president Paddy Crumlin is co-chair of the committee. He said: “What workers’ capital amounts to is securing workers decent retirements through the long term and effective investment of their deferred wages. Through their pension fund assets, now worth trillions of dollars, workers’ they are the indirect owners of a substantial portion of the world’s equity and other investments including community and commercial infrastructure. There is a direct link between increasing workers' demands on how their money is being invested and the quality of their lives both at work and in retirement.”

Mr Crumlin also appeared on Radio Labour to talk about workers' capital.

ITUC general secretary Sharan Burrow, who is also part of the CWC leadership team, said: “What we’re promoting here is education. We want union pension trustees to understand the implications of the decisions they make re workers’ capital investment. We want them to be committed to responsible investment and using workers’ money to bring social value in our communities.”


With over 200 members from 25 different countries, the Global Unions Committee on Workers’ Capital connects labour union organizations around the world to advance the responsible investment agenda on the global stage. For more information, go here.