ITUC-Asia Pacific calls for decent work-centred structural reform to address Pakistan's economic crisis and looming sovereign debt default

May 2023
United Nations
Pakistan, Debt, Economic Crisis

Singapore - The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC)-Asia Pacific has adopted a resolution in response to Pakistan's economic and social crisis during its 19th Regional Executive Bureau meeting held on May 11-12, 2023. The resolution calls for urgent and immediate relief measures to help Pakistan, which is on the brink of sovereign default.

Shoya Yoshida, General Secretary of the ITUC-Asia Pacific, emphasised the need for structural reforms that prioritise decent work to ensure a long-term solution to Pakistan's crisis. He said:

"A structural reform for a decent work-centred recovery based on a new social contract with decent jobs, rights, social protection, inclusion, and equality is the only solution to transform this crisis into long-term stability and shared prosperity for the people in Pakistan."

The resolution urges the Pakistani government and the international community, particularly international financial institutions, to take immediate and urgent relief actions, including debt relief measures such as debt cancellation.

Shoya Yoshida also expressed concern about the increasing geographical insecurity as well as the terrorism escalated by the insecurity in Pakistan.

The resolution highlights the need for a comprehensive and coordinated response to the crisis, including measures to support workers and vulnerable communities. In particular, it demands the government of Pakistan to invite social partners without delay, along with international and regional financial institutions, to hold social dialogue to discuss necessary decent work-centred reforms to overcome the crisis.

The ITUC-Asia Pacific is a regional body that represents over 60 million workers across Asia and the Pacific. Its mission is to promote and defend workers' rights, improve working conditions, and foster social justice and equality in the region. The adoption of this resolution highlights the ITUC-Asia Pacific's commitment to supporting workers and vulnerable communities in times of crisis.

Download the resolution here.

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