The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) will this week (Thursday) convene its three-day extraordinary job security conference aimed at ameliorating the negative effects of the worst global economic recession in history of the country.
State President Kgalema Motlanthe and senior government ministers in trade industry and labour will give keynote addresses on government’s social plan initiatives and its expected stimulus package to rescue the affected industries.
The conference scheduled to begin on March 12-14, 2009 at Eskom Convention Centre in Midrand, will be attended by an avalanche of economic analysts, government delegations, employer associations, labour union federations, trade unions and officials from a host of the non-governmental organizations.
Nedlac chief director Herbert Mkize is expected to infuse Nedlac agreements and sectoral industrial policy institutions and how government proposals should be put into effect to counter the scourge of global economic crisis.
The International Metalworkers Federation (IMF) together with bargaining councils and five sector employers associations will also be playing a major role in the commissions on how to respond to the crisis.
Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi will lead panel discussions on trade union standpoint on Nedlac accords, while both ministries in trade and industry and labour, will shed the light on the long-term effects of economic liberalization, failure to diversify the economy and balancing government bail out packages with how workers can be assisted in order to benefit immensely.
Numsa general secretary Irvin Jim is to provide analysis and detailed report on the effects of the sectoral job destruction, resultant short times, shut downs, liquidations and retrenchments suffered in the engineering, motor components which lost 36 000 jobs, auto and tyre sectors lost 2 500 jobs with further anticipated retrenchments involving 38 000 as a result of the global economic slump.
More than 32 000 workers in the engineering sector, meanwhile are already on short-time. A proposed framework for an alternative stimulus package, including anticipated subsidization of employees’ wages for the metal and steel sectors and measures to strengthen implementation of current provisions and agreements will also be presented.
President Motlanthe’s guest address in concluding the three-day conference is expected to break new grounds on intensifying measures to change the last vestiges of imposing colonial economic policies through vibrant industrial strategy.
The entire conference will be open to media coverage, including open plenary sessions after closed commission proceedings and the final press conference will be held between 12 noon- 13H00 in the auditorium.
For further information contact:-
Mziwakhe Hlangani, Numsa national spokesperson
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