A total of 120 trade union leaders from various national centres and affiliates of the Global Unions Federations (GUFs) gathered in a National Symposium to formulate and affirm the position paper of Indonesian trade unions regarding the Job Creation Law and a roadmap for labour law reforms in Indonesia. The National Symposium was held in Jakarta, Indonesia from 23 to 24 August 2023 and was participated by ITUC and ITUC-Asia Pacific affiliates, namely, Konfederasi Serikat Buruh Seluruh Indonesia (KSBSI, Confederation of All Indonesian Trade Unions) and Konfederasi Serikat Pekerja Indonesia (KSPI, Confederation of Indonesian Trade Unions).
The roadmap for labour law reforms was developed in line with the conclusions and recommendations of the Committee on the Application of Standards (CAS) on the implementation of International Labour Organization (ILO) Convention No. 98 during the 111th Session of the International Labour Conference in June. In this regard, the Government must avail itself, without delay, of technical assistance with particular focus on legislative labour law reform, including the reform of the Job Creation Law, with the full involvement of social partners, to ensure full compliance with its obligations under the ILO Convention No. 98 in law and practice.
Tim De Meyer, Senior Advisor in the ILO’s International Labour Standards Department (NORMES) and Michiko Miyamoto, ILO Director for Indonesia and Timor Leste were also present in the National Symposium. Recognising NORMES’s technical expertise, Indonesian trade union leaders conveyed their wish for NORMES to come to Indonesia by end of 2023 and have a special session with the workers’ group. Moreover, they requested ILO to provide technical assistance at the earliest possible time in conducting gap analysis on major legislative reforms, including the necessary reforms in the Job Creation Law, and on the compliance with labour standards.
Following the National Symposium, a press conference was organised jointly by the Presidents of the three largest national centres in Indonesia – Said Iqbal from KSPI, Elly Silaban from KSBSI and Andi Gani Nena Wea from Konfederasi Serikat Pekerja Seluruh Indonesia (KSPSI, Confederation of All Indonesian Workers’ Unions). The three leaders expressed their joint position that Job Creation Law, specifically the employment cluster, must be repealed as it has brought misery to Indonesian workers. They also expressed their commitment to continue advancing joint efforts to fight regressive labour laws in different ways, including by maximising judicial procedures and engaging in direct actions and strikes.
The struggles of Indonesian trade unions leaders for progressive labour law reforms have been continuously supported by the ITUC-Asia Pacific, GUFs, Trade Unions Solidarity Supports Organisations (TUSSOs), and the Global Union Indonesia Network (GUIN).