Japan Visit by Constructive Industrial Relation Enhancement and Development Team: Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Malaysia

Visit to the Confederation of Japan Automobile Workers’ Unions (JAW)

JILAF invited a total of nine labour union officials, including four women, from Japanese companies operating in four Asian countries-Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Malaysia—for various study sessions from June 4 through 13, 2017. This visit program was intended to deepen the understanding of labour-management relations, industrial practices, labour-related legislation, employment management, working conditions, and other issues in Japan as well as to establish basic human relations networks. The invitation of union personnel for such purposes was made for the first time in JILAF history.

 There were lecture sessions in which the visitors learned the postwar labour union history of Japan, “spring labour offensive (shunto)” and other labour initiatives, the minimum wage system, labour-related legislation, and how to democratically manage a labor union. Working for labour unions of Japanese companies, all the participants were familiar with the industrial situation in Japan. While staying in Japan, they showed serious willingness to look for ways of making good use of Japan’s favorable industrial relations for labour initiatives in their own countries.
During the visit to the Confederation of Japan Automobile Workers’ Unions (JAW), they listened to the explanation of the outlines of the confederation as well as the roles to be played by industrial sector–based labour unions and specific initiatives to be taken, among other things. Some participants from automotive parts manufacturers demonstrated special interest, resulting in positive exchanges of Q-and-A’s concerning the actual conditions of nonregular employees in the automotive industry, the principle of equal pay for equal-value work, and other related points.

 On June 9, an expanded-scale session, Exchange of Views on the Labour Situation, was held. Discussion was held on the theme “Industrial initiatives based on the principles of labour-management equality and autonomy,” focusing on individual labour unions. There were about 50 invited labour union representatives and employers of Japan. Invited participants reported their efforts in the areas of (i) improvement of corporate pension fund plans and reduction of medical expenses, (ii) organization of sports events and CSR activities, enhancement of welfare facilities, (iii) introduction of a union membership fee checkoff system, (iv) specific cases of job transfer efforts as countermeasures to worker reduction due to Thailand 4.0 (promotion of industry digitalization), and others.

 There was a discussion session between the overseas union representatives and JILAF officials. JILAF requested that the visitors improve employment conditions by specifically clarifying to management the areas that the union could extend cooperation to management and those it could not. JILAF also added that, while a number of action plans for organizational enhancement were reported, it is important to strengthen the financial foundations for union management. On the other hand, the overseas participants presented a number of views and requests, saying that the visit was too short, and they would like to learn more from industrial relations in Japan.

List of Organization That Cooperated in the Visit

Confederation of Japan Automobile Workers’ Unions (JAW),Thank you for the cooperation

Many thanks to everyone.

Japan Visit by Constructive Industrial Relation Enhancement and Development Team: Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, and Malaysia Participants

Confederation of Indonesian Trade Unions (CITU) 

1.NameMr.Ardian Safendra
 Name of organizationAutomotive Machine and Component one of Sector from FSPMI
 PositionVice Secretary
 Union experience8

Malaysian Trades Union Congress(MTUC)

2.NameMr.Saiful Bahari Bin Zakaria
 Name of organizationCanon Opton Malaysia Executive Union
 PositionSecretary
 Union experience13

Malaysian Trades Union Congress(MTUC)

3.NameMr.Azison Bin Yusof
 Name of organizationDaikin Malaysia SDN. BHD
 PositionUnion Worksite Secretary
 Union experience9

Malaysian Trades Union Congress(MTUC)

4.NameMr.Mohd Amirruddin Bin Abd Hamid
 Name of organizationPENANG & PROVINCE WELLESLEY TEXTILE AND GARMENT WORKERS UNION
 PositionGeneral Secretary
 Union experience16

Trade Union Congress of the Philippines(TUCP)

5.NameMs.Connie Ramos Tagle
 Name of organizationATMAK EMPLOYEES UNION
 PositionVICE PRESIDENT
 Union experience5

Trade Union Congress of the Philippines(TUCP)

6.NameMs.Emelita Balidio Lonsame
 Name of organizationObrero Pilipino - LAMCOR Chapter
 PositionMember, Board of Directors
 Union experience8

Confederation of Industrial Labour of Thailand(CILT)

7.NameMs.Suttatip Sungkabut
 Name of organizationThai Asahi Glass Labour Union Chonburi
 PositionPresident
 Union experience6

Confederation of Industrial Labour of Thailand(CILT)

8.NameMr.Nattawat Wangsuddee
 Name of organizationThailand Metal Industry Workers’ Union
 PositionGeneral Secretary
 Union experience18

Confederation of Industrial Labour of Thailand(CILT)

9.NameMs.Wandee CHANNEAM
 Name of organizationThai Electric Wire and Associates Worker
 PositionVice-President
 Union experience24

Photos of Participants

Lecture given by JILAF

Visit to the Japanese Trade Union Confederation (RENGO)

Views exchanged with JILAF officials