JILAF, together with the Confederation of Indonesian Trade Unions (CITU/KSPI in Indonesian), held a two-day industrial relations and labour policy seminar in the city of Bekasi in West Java, Indonesia, on November 1–2. The seminar was attended by 115 people (of whom 19 were women), including a special guest from the Japanese Embassy in Indonesia and speakers from the Indonesian Ministry of Manpower and Transmigration, an employers’ organization, and others. Reflecting the local situation, the participants included around 45 people from unions belonging to Japanese companies.
At the opening ceremony, speaking on behalf of the organizers, the acting president of the CITU/KSPI expressed his gratitude for the opportunity provided by JILAF and the Japanese government and urged participants to effectively utilize what they learned in their future activities. JILAF Secretary General Masayuki Shioda also said, “The economies of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, including Indonesia, are changing and growing rapidly, but it cannot be said that wages, social security, and the utilization of human resources are adequate. It is significant that this seminar is being held in an area where many Japanese companies are operating, and I hope that you will put what you learn to use in the future.” In addition, First Secretary Kazu Honda of the Japanese Embassy in Indonesia, who was attending as a special guest, also gave an address.
The opening ceremony was followed by lectures and a panel discussion, with participants making statements from the floor on every occasion.
In a special lecture, the head of the Welfare Section of the Bureau of Industrial Relations in the Indonesian Ministry of Labour explained that it was necessary for trade unions to think about not only confrontational issues like wages but also the financial capabilities of their companies and related industrial policies, such as investment and financial trends and the global supply chain.
Another speaker, a member of the CITU/KSPI Executive Committee, noted that at a time of dull economic growth and stagnant consumption, representing a negative economic cycle, the government was giving priority to companies and that the 2015 Government Regulation No. 78 on the method of determining minimum wages ran counter to the protection of workers and was a mistake.
In addition, JILAF Secretary General Shiota delivered a lecture titled “The Role of the Japanese Labour Movement and Issues,” after which the participants asked lively questions about the method of labour-management consultations in Japan.
In the afternoon another special lecture was given by a representative from the Employers’ Association of Indonesia (APINDO), who spoke about industrial relations and fair distribution and pointed to the importance of solving issues through tripartite government-labour-management discussions.
A panel discussion was then held by the APINDO representative, JILAF Secretary General Shiota, and the CITU/KSPI vice-president on the theme of “Trade union activities toward fair distribution,” in which the CITU/KSPI vice-president pointed out the problems of Government Regulation No. 78. In response, JILAF Secretary General Shioda shared information about the situation in Japan, saying that the realization of fair distribution was an issue in negotiations in whatever country. The APINDO representative remarked that minimum wages were designed to protect workers and that it was necessary for labour and management to think about the matter together from a long-term perspective.
On the second day, after an explanation of the current situation regarding wages and so on, the participants separated into industrial groups to discuss and formulate action plans. There was much opposition to Government Regulation No. 78, with almost every group bringing up related problems.
At the closing ceremony, JILAF Secretary General Shiota wrapped up the seminar by saying, “Many issues were raised in the seminar, such as Government Regulation No. 78 and improvement of the wage system. I know that there are many participants from unions in Japanese companies, and I would like you to know that in most cases the management of Japanese companies would respond positively to discussions with the union. Amid the changing economic and social circumstances, on the basis of Indonesia’s social culture, I hope that you union leaders will act as pioneers in the building of constructive industrial relations.”
|11/01||Tue||Seminar day 1|
|11/02||Wed||Seminar day 2|