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Business & Finance | Jan 25, 2005

TUC launches International Trading System Manual

GNA

Accra, Jan. 25, GNA - The Trades Union Congress (TUC) of Ghana on Tuesday launched a manual on international trading system designed to educate unionised workers on issues relating to international trade. The 72-page text also seeks to engender discussions on how global trading issues affected employment, labour rights and to develop appropriate strategies to improve and sustain livelihoods in developing countries.

Launching the manual, Mr Kwasi Adu Amankwa, Secretary-General of TUC, said beyond the unionised members the manual would be of immense relevance to other civil society pressure groups.

The publication was funded by the Commonwealth Trade Union Council (CRUC) and Netherlands Trade Union Council of Finland (FNV) and began with a series of seminars to ensure broad-base consultation. He said the creation of the manual was mainly motivated by the desire as an organisation not only to protect the interest of the people but also to take steps that would promote better trade policies in the country.

Mr Amankwa noted that trade was closely linked to the development of every nation and thus could determine peoples access to decent living.

"Trade is an indispensable aspect of development and its relations will always impact either positively or negatively on nations and lives of the people"

He said sadly enough, while trading had been used to eradicate poverty and integrate economies elsewhere, developing countries had been continually marginalised as a result of trade restrictions that undermined their capacity to produce.

Mr Amankwa observed that World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules governing trade were varied and as a result posed a serious challenge to poor countries and favoured richer ones.

"Issues of informality and transparency in WTO processes raise critical concern on the possibility of ensuring balance trade between the rich and poorer countries".

He said the phenomenon sharply brought into focus the role of civil society organizations, particularly trade unions on how to engage governments and remind them of their responsibilities towards their citizens.

"We as Trades Union are concerned about how these policies promote the respect for labour right, guarantee employment, decent work and eventually sustained livelihood."

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