Unions seek to create 'new order' among workers

PUBLISHED : Friday, 22 October, 1993, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 22 October, 1993, 12:00am

CHINA'S official trade unions will strive to create a ''new order'' in the international workers' movement by expanding contacts with their counterparts around the world, official reports said.

The new order should be based on the principles of independence, equality, mutual respect and non-interference in each other's internal affairs, a leader of the All-China Federation of Trade Unions (ACFTU) said.

Wang Yuxian asserted that the government-sanctioned unions would seek to enhance relations with all foreign unions, irrespective of their ideology, political system and connections with other international unions, in accordance with its principles.

Mr Wang was speaking to Xinhua (the New China News Agency) yesterday as the national trade union is to convene its 12th plenum in Beijing on Sunday.

The official propaganda machine has geared up in the past week to press home the message that workers remain the masters of the socialist nation.

This is despite the growing hardship of labourers since the 14-year-old process of reform enriched a small number of people, but not the bulk of society.

Chinese analysts said the plight of peasants and workers could be a time bomb, adding that there had been sporadic unrest in dozens of Chinese cities in the past year.

In the opening session of the ACFTU, senior leaders are expected to reassert that the working classes are still masters of the country The delegates are set to discuss how to promote the well-being of workers in areas such as protection of labour rights in the plenum.

Xinhua said the official labour body had succeeded in increasing ties with foreign counterparts in recent years.

''Our relations with unions in countries that are neighbours to China have never been so good,'' Mr Wang said.

Chinese unions hoped to benefit from the experiences of all foreign unions, he said.