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Mar '08

Apindo vows to intensify cooperation with workers

Armed with a newly elected board of chairmen, the Indonesian Employers Association (Apindo) is set to focus on revamping investments in labor-intensive industries while continuing support for fiscal and labor policies reform.

Reappointed chairman for a second term, Sofyan Wanandi said to achieve its goals Apindo must intensify cooperation with workers unions.

“Before creating an improved labor-intensive industry, we must create a good investment climate by cooperating and becoming the partners of workers as they are the most the important thing in this industry,” Sofyan told reporters at the last day of Apindo’s eighth national congress in Jakarta on Friday.

He also called on the government and legislators to recognize and scrap all regulations hampering investment growth and to accelerate the deliberation of the labor law and tax law to leverage the country’s global competitiveness.

“Our parliament is too busy taking care of politics and neglecting the investment issue,” said the 69-year-old, who owns holding company Gemala Group.

Apindo is now also led by, among others, hotel tycoon Hariyadi B. Sukamdani, footwear entrepreneur Djimanto and textile entrepreneur Mintardjo Halim.

The post of Apindo secretary general is taken by Anton J. Supit.

Speaking as a guest speaker at a dinner with Apindo members, Vice President Jusuf Kalla said the relationship between the government, employers and workers was often marred by distrust as each party had its own ways of achieving what should be a common goal for all, “increased prosperity.”

“Workers often feel insecure about their future and employers are always threatened by uncertainties, while the government is constantly cautious over the acts of irresponsible investors,” Kalla said.

Building the bond of trust, he said, was crucial.

“Nowadays we have so many workers unions, hence the need for a more intensified dialogue and better understanding of the general economy for all people,” he said.

Indonesian Chamber of Commerce and Industry chairman M.S. Hidayat expected the re-election of Sofyan would change the paradigm in the business sector from confrontation to communication.

“He has the tough task of instigating changes to labor and other business laws to create a better climate for business,” he said.

The chairman of the Confederation of Indonesian Prosperous Labor Unions, Rekson Silaban, said Sofyan brought about many differences in the relationship between workers and employers during his first term.

“Before Sofyan, there was little communication, creating high suspicions in industrial relations. By becoming chairman again, I hope the relationship can be strengthened through the bipartite forum.”

Sumber : (Novia D. Rulistia) The Jakarta Post,  Jakarta 

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