The 42nd ADB Board of Governors Annual Meeting (AGM) was held in Bali from 2-5 May 2009. Some eighty (80) leaders of PSI and its affiliated unions in Asia and Pacific with other global unions, Building and Wood Workers’ International (BWI) and Union Network International (UNI), participated in the Bali meeting. As in past AGMs, PSI’s key objectives in Bali were to: (a) promote PSI campaigns on Core Labor Standards/CLS and Quality Public Services/QPS; (b) lobby donor delegations for inclusion of CLS in ADB’s safeguard policies and need to strengthen labor impact assessment; and (c) strengthen alliances with other labor networks/civil society groups on common campaigns. For the Bali meeting, the PSI-GUs delegation focused on the issues of the Bank’s General Capital Increase (GCI), Strategy 2020, global financial/economic crisis and need for a labor desk at ADB.
PSI-GUs organized several major activities in Bali – (a) GUFs-ADB Forum on “Addressing Impact on Workers of the Global Economic and Financial Crisis”; (b) CSO Meeting with ADB Pres. Haruhiko Kuroda; (c) PSI Forum on “Electricity Reforms in Asia-Pacific and Role of ADB/IFIs”; (d) Meetings with ADB country delegations; (e) Participation in the ADB Bali Seminar Series; (f) Media work and (g) Preparatory/Wrap-up meetings.
Among the key outcomes in the Bali engagement were: (a) a higher profile for PSI and global unions and CLS issues; (b) better understanding of participating PSI affiliates of issues related to ADB’s operations and how these affect their unions and sectors; (c) greater interest among PSI affiliates to engage ADB more actively on key campaigns; (d) greater awareness and appreciation among ADB’s key policy-makers of the need for a Labor Desk at ADB. Next actions in PSI-GUFs’ engagement with ADB are: (a) 1st ITUC-GUFs-ADB Dialogue Session at ADB Headquarters in Manila on May 27; and (b) PSI Regional Coordination cum Strategic Planning Workshop on the ADB campaign in Manila in September 2009.