Middle East and Northern Africa Team

JILAF invited a total of 11 persons (including 4 women) from the Middle East and Northern Africa to visit Japan from November 29 to December 12. The participants came from the General Union of Algerian Workers (UGTA), the General Federation of Bahrain Trade Unions (GFBTU), the Egyptian Federation of Independent Trade Unions (EFITU), the General Federation of Jordanian Trade Unions (GFJTU), the Moroccan Federation of Labour (UMT), the Palestine General Federation of Trade Unions (PGFTU), and the Tunisian General Labour Union (UGTT).
Although the participants were from seven countries, they had a strong consciousness of a single Arab world and gave a sense of unity as a team throughout their stay. At the lectures they asked many lively questions, and the sessions often ran over time. While displaying the characteristic Arab conviviality, they also came from countries facing severe domestic situations, so they had particularly strong feelings about peace.
In the labour-related lectures, the participants learned about the postwar history of Japanese trade unions and the Japanese labour movement, including the spring labour struggle, as well as the minimum wage system, labour legislation, and democratic trade union management. For the participants, the premise of industrial relations was confrontation, so they seemed to be very interested in Japanese industrial relations and asked many related questions.
At RENGO (Japanese Trade Union Confederation), they received a lecture on gender-equality policy. The women participants were puzzled by and raised questions about the low participation ratio of women in Japan, an advanced nation.
In group discussions aimed at enhancing their negotiating capabilities as trade union officials, the participants divided into two groups, one on “industrial policy” and one on “employment policy,” and engaged in discussions. While recognizing that the response would be different in each of the participating countries, they held heated discussions on such topics as how trade unions should act for the protection of workers.
In the industrial federation visit, the participants visited Seiho Roren (National Federation of Life Insurance Workers’ Unions), where they received an explanation of the life insurance industry in Japan, Seiho Roren, and Seiho Roren’s approach in the 2016 spring labour struggle.
In discussions with RENGO Osaka, they heard explanations from the deputy secretaries general responsible for labour, policy, and organization and then asked questions about the differences between the RENGO Headquarters and regional branches of RENGO, the problem of nonregular workers, the approach of RENGO Osaka in the spring labour struggle, and other issues.
In the workplace visit, they inspected the light vehicle assembly facility and museum at the Ikeda Plant of Daihatsu Motor Co., Ltd. In discussions with trade union officials, their questions focused on globalization, such as relations with Toyota and competition among automakers.
The participants also visited the Hello Work Higashiosaka public employment office, where they learned about its organizational structure and the mechanism of unemployment insurance, as well as actually experiencing searching for job vacancies on computers, and Kitaosaka Polytechnic High School, where they observed the studies of young people aspiring to work in manufacturing jobs and inspected the advanced equipment there.
On the final day the participants spoke about how they intended to use what they had learned during their training in their activities back home, citing such things as the building of good industrial relations, the establishment of unified negotiations like Japan’s spring labour struggle, and the expansion of vocational training centers.

List of Organization That Cooperated in the Visit

Seiho RorenOsaka Shigoto Field
RENGO OsakaHello Work Higashiosaka
Osaka Prefecture Kitaosaka Polytechnic High SchoolDaihatsu Motor Co., Ltd. Ikeda Plant
Daihatsu Motor Labour Union

Many thanks to everyone.

Middle East and Northern Africa Team Participants

Union Generale des Travailleurs Algeriens(UGTA)

1.NameMr.Belgacem Kerfah
 Name of organizationInstitut National d'Etudes et De Recherches Syndicales (INERS)
 PositionFormateur, charge de l'education et de la formation
 Union experience17

Union Generale des Travailleurs Algeriens(UGTA)

2.NameMs.Nait Ouarab Hadjira
 Name of organizationWilaya de Bejaia
 PositionVice presidente,la commission Femm
 Union experience6

General Federation of Bahrain Trade Unions ( Hasan Abdulla Al-Halwachi)(GFBTU)

3.NameMr.Mohammed Jassim Aryan
 Name of organizationGarmco Trade Union
 PositionPresident
 Union experience1

The Egyptian Federation of Independent Trade Unions (EFITU)

4.NameMr.Bassem Ahmed Mohamed Ahmed
 Name of organizationEgyption Tourist Independent Trade Union
 PositionPresident
 Union experience5

The Egyptian Federation of Independent Trade Unions (EFITU)

5.NameMs.Hebatalla Mahmoud Mahmoud Sheta
 Name of organizationEgyption Tourist Independent Trade Union
 PositionPublic Relation for Comunications
 Union experience5

The General Federation of Jordanian Trade Unions(GFJTU)

6.NameMr.Moh'd Ali Meslam Al Hajaya
 Name of organizationMines Union
 PositionMember of board
 Union experience20

The General Federation of Jordanian Trade Unions(GFJTU)

7.NameMr.Hazem Ibrahim Aljaafreh
 Name of organizationBank Union
 PositionYouth Committee
 Union experience6

Union Marocaine du Travail (Moroccan Workers’ Union)(UMT)

8.NameMs.Mrani Asmae
 Name of organizationSyndical national de la federation du journalisme et la communication
 PositionMembre du bureau national de l'UMT
 Union experience15

Palestine General Federation of Trade Unions(PGFTU)

9.NameMr.Husam Mohammed Abualrob
 Name of organizationPalestine General Federation of Trade Unions(PGFTU)  
 PositionMember
 Union experience15

Palestine General Federation of Trade Unions(PGFTU)

10.NameMs.Azza M.H Jaber
 Name of organizationPalestine General Federation of Trade Unions(PGFTU)  
 PositionMember
 Union experience5

Union Generale Tunisienne du Travail (TUNISIAN GENERAL FEDERATION OF LABOUR)(UGTT)

11.NameMr.Laouini Benmahmoud Hatem
 Name of organizationTunisian General Federation of Labour (UGTT)
 PositionMember
 Union experience14

Photos of Participants

Scene of lecture

Visit to the Ministry of Health, Labour, and Welfare

Group discussions

Presentations of the labour situation in each country

Searching job vacancies at Hello Work Higashiosaka

At Daihatsu Museum