Friday, June 15, 2007

Metalworkers on African Unions

Building sustainable unions in Africa

The IMF regional office in Africa works closely with affiliates to build international solidarity, strengthen trade unions and improve the lives of workers. As described in this report, the challenges are enormous requiring a strategic focus on building sustainable unions as can be seen in Tanzania and Swaziland.


Successive waves of political, cultural and economic colonization and global power struggles have left Africa an economic shell. Today, human and mineral resources are extracted and small pockets of industrialisation remain to support the ongoing plunder. Alongside this, vast ghettos of poverty and suffering exist.

The countries that make up Africa are a diverse grouping in terms of geography, population size, language, wealth, distribution of wealth, life expectancy, health, public sector resources, trade union size and cohesion, labour market size and HIV prevalence.

The depth and deepening of poverty in many African countries has often not served to mobilize workers and their organisations but has in fact weakened them both politically and organisationally.


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