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									                                                                                TIME TO LISTEN TO THE
                                          ASU Responds to Western               PEOPLE
                                          Australian Energy Reform              A court in Ontario, Canada has
 DATE MAY 2002                            The ASU Western Australian            stopped government plans to
                                          Branch has responded to the           privatise its electricity generating
                                          Government's planned reform of        and transmission company.
                                          the Electricity Sector with           Legal action brought by PSI
                                          Submissions to the Government         affiliate CUPE and the
 Inside this issue……                      enquiry and information               Communications, Energy and
                                          seminars for delegates. The           Paperwork’s_ Union,
 Market                                   seminars have examined in             resulted in the stop order. At the
 Concentration in                         detail the Reform contemplated        Ontario Superior Court, the
 European Power-                          by the Government and its             unions argued that sale of the
 The Greens                               implications for the citizens of      company, Hydro One, would
                                          Western Australia and ASU             violate the Electricity Act. The
 ASU negotiates                           members. The seminars were            judge agreed that the Act
 international                            convened by Paul Burlinson,           allowed the Ontario government
                                          Western Australian Secretary          to acquire and hold shares in
 agreement with                           and David Taylor, Branch              Hydro One, but not to sell them.
 Vivendi.                                 President (both from the              Judy Darcy, CUPE President,
                                          Electricity Sector) have been         said outside the courthouse on
                                          addressed by Industry                 19 April that the government
 15 MILLION STRIKE                        representatives including             should now listen to the people
 AGAINST                                  members of the State                  of Ontario. They never sought a
 PRIVATISATION                            Government Reform Committee,          mandate to open markets or to
                                          Western Power and ASU                 sell off the electricity grid or
 Indonesia.                               Assistant National Secretary,         anything else_ she said. See
                                          Greg McLean. See                      www.cupe.ca.
                                          www.asu.asn.au
 ASU Water & Local                                                              15 MILLION STRIKE
 Government                               ASU Water & Local
                                          Government Queensland –               AGAINST PRIVATISATION
 Queensland –                                                                   Much of India was brought to a
 Services & N.S.W.                        Services & N.S.W. M. E.U.
                                                                                standstill on 16 April. According
                                          hold cross boarded meeting to
 M. E.U.                                                                        to news reports, an estimated 15
                                          discuss issues including cross
                                                                                million workers went on strike to
                                          boarder water supply,
 PLUS MORE ……                             competencies and training,
                                                                                protest government privatisation
                                                                                plans and proposals to make
                                          attitudes of state governments to
                                                                                retrenchments easier for
                                          the utility sector and more details
                                                                                employers. Public sector unions,
                                          http://www.asu.asn.au/media/loc
                                                                                including those of banks and
 ASU                                      algovt/20020530_border.html
 Greg McLean                                                                    insurance companies, claimed
 Assistant National Secretary                                                   complete success for the strike.
 E-mail:                                                                        A government statement
 gmclean@syd.asu.asn.au                                                         admitted that it was near total
                                                                                nationwide as 15 million

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employees kept away from                  risk of injury increases with the    For information on negotiations
their workplaces. Strikers                amount of computer usage. See        and the agreement contents,
called for finance minister               www.interscience.wiley.com/jpages.   please contact Greg (details
Yashwant Sinha_s head                                                          below).
                                          ASU negotiates
for his proposals aimed at                                                     http://www.asu.asn.au/media/utili
benefiting _the interests of              international agreement              ties_water/20020607_vivendi.ht
big businesshouses and                    with Vivendi. The company            ml
foreign players_.                         known to most Australians as
(Contibution PSI) See                     Universal Film Studios, Vivendi      THE GREENS/EFA IN THE
www.financialexpress.com/                 Water, Collex or Connex, is          EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT
fe_archive_full_story.php?                involved in negotiations with the
                                                                               PRESS           RELEASE         -
content_id=6956.                          ASU for a worldwide agreement
                                          on workers' rights. Assistant        Brussels, 29th May 2002
                                          National Secretary, Greg             Market Concentration in
CARE                                      McLean, has been called on by        European Power Sector
http://www.care.org/                      the Public Services                  Threatens Liberalisation
                                          International (PSI), a global        Process
United Nations -                          union representing 20 million        Claude Turmes, the European
Special Session on                        public sector workers, to            Parliament rapporteur on
Children – UNICEF                         represent affiliates in the Asia     electricity liberalisation and
                                          and Pacific Region, including        coordinator of energy policies
http://www.unicef.org/sp                  Australia . Greg has reported
ecialsession/                                                                  for the Green/EFA Group in
                                          back to ASU delegates saying,
                                                                               the European Parliament
                                          "The purpose of the negotiations
MINIMISING                                                                     today released a report which
                                          is to gain an understanding with
COMPUTER-RELATED                          this multi-national who employs      highlights the rapidly growing
INJURIES                                  thousands of workers in              problem of market
New research reported in                  Australia directly and through its   concentration in the power
the American Journal of                   subsidiaries, along with 370,000     sector. As a consequence,
Industrial Medicine says                  plus workers directly worldwide      the liberalisation of the
that 21% of people using                  and thousands more as                Union's electricity industry has
computers as part of their                contractors or providers of          not resulted in a sustained
work develop hand or arm                  services. The opportunity to be
disorders each year. The                                                       increase in competition as
                                          involved in negotiations for such
study involved 632 people                                                      planned, but rather in the
                                          a significant agreement is not
newly hired in jobs                                                            development of large
                                          only directly of benefit to ASU
requiring at least 15 hours               members and their families but       multinational energy utilities.
of computer use each                      also there is an important           "Without stricter rules on
week. However the study                   historical opportunity for the ASU   market dominance and a
contradicts conventional                  to be part of negotiations           phase out of the existing
recommendations on                        representing the broad trade         market distortions in favour of
posture. It says that lower               union community and being            some big players, the
keyboard positions (that                  recognised for this. It also shows   European electricity market
result in an angle of 120                 how important the ASU is now         will become dominated by a
degrees at the inner                      becoming to the Australian
elbow), lower screen                                                           handful of oligopolies. This is
                                          community and its recognition by     a threat to the functioning of
positions so that the head                other Unions." The trade union
is tilted downward, and                                                        the market and the
                                          movement has now completed
supports such as chair                                                         democratic control of a vital
                                          its deliberations and is
armrests can reduce                       negotiating directly with            public service." said Claude
injuries. Less surprisingly,              company representatives              Turmes, Parliamentary
the                                       through the company's head           rapporteur of the Electricity
study also found that the                 office.                              Market Directive.

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Across the EU three                       the meeting the French               employees at Ericson had to
companies, Electricité                    Government, with the backing         stay home,
de France, Eon and                        of Germany, are trying to            etc,etc. SEKO members have
RWE are increasing                        weaken the provisions that           refused to go down in the
their dominance of the                    require the separation of grid       tunnel this time because of
market by acquiring                       operators from generators            the big risks. The cables
electricity utilities across              (unbundling),    thus     giving     could be out of order over the
continentalEurope.                        advantages to companies in           weekend.
Furthermore, with their                   their home markets.
movement into other                       "The grid is the backbone of         SOEs revenues growth set
utility companies – such                  the electricity system if we         at 13% -Indonesia
as Eon's proposed                         allow major companies to             Business and Investment (
purchase of Ruhrgas –                     discriminate against their           extract)- The Jakarta Post,
their dominance in the                    competitors             through      The government expects
energy sector is set to                   manipulation of grid prices          average revenue growth of 13
dramatically increase.                    and by setting technical             percent for its 145 state-
One market distortion                     hurdles     they     will     kill   owned enterprises (SOEs)
already exploited by the                  competition," said Turmes.           under a program which will
big three is the use of                   The report "Power Generation         set the course over the next
the funds set aside for                   Market     Concentration       in    four years for Rp 772.5 trillion
decommissioning their                     Europe 1996-2000. " An               (about US$82 billion) worth of
nuclear facilities. Such                  Empirical     Analysis;     Öko      state assets. Called the SOEs
funds represent tens of                   Institut   and      associated       masterplan, the program
billions of Euro of                       documents         can         be     outlines government policies
potential investment,                     downloaded from:                     in reforming the SOE sector
and such financial                        http://www.eu-energy.com             up until the year 2006. This
backing is not available                  and then use the market              includes the government's
to other nuclear or non-                  concentration heading                privatization program,
nuclear utilities in other                Press     Service     of     the     which has seen the stiffest
Member States, as they                    Greens/EFA Group                     opposition come from SOE
are barred from                           in the European Parliament           stakeholders, such as
accessing their funds.                    Helmut Weixler                       employees and local
"A central theme of                       Head of Press Office                 politicians.
future competition policy                 e-mail:                              The masterplan begins with a
for the EU must be how                    hweixler@europarl.eu.int             vision of turning SOEs into
to open up the existing                   website: www.greens-efa.org          "business entities which can
monopolies while avoid                                                         compete globally and are
new concentrations in                     STOCKHOLM                            capable of meeting
the power sector", said                   29 May 2002: a fire                  stakeholders' expectations."
Dr Felix Matthes, from                    developed in a cable tunnel in       Indonesia owns 161 SOEs,
the Öko Institut and lead                 Stockholm. It was on the             but only 145 are in the plan
author of the report.                     same place as 15 months              because the 2001 financial
Next week, at the                         ago. It left more than 50.000        statements of the others are
Energy Council Meeting                    households without electricity.      still unavailable. By 2006, the
discussions on the next                   Newspapers could not be              masterplan projects SOEs'
wave of liberalisation in                 printed, there were traffic          total revenue will have hit Rp
the Gas and Electricity                   problems, problems with              378.66 trillion, up from Rp
markets will continue. At                 health care, 10.000                  237.56 trillion in 2001. This, it


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said, is achievable                                                           benefits of lifting the
based on average                          Human rights & industrial           monopoly and imposing a free
revenue growth of 13                      relations                           market system in the sector. –
percent.                                  In delivering the annual            repotrs
The issuance of the                       Kingsley Laffer lecture,            SRI INDAH BUDIARTI
masterplan comes amid                     Michael Kirby                       PSI LOCAL COORDINATOR
persistent calls for the                  considers Australia's               INDONESIA
government to reduce its                  arbitration system, the ILO,        E-mail :
role in the SOEs and                      racial and other                    indah_psiind@email.com
focus instead on its                      forms of discrimination, and
regulatory function.                      human rights.                       World Bank - BULLETIN
Trade experts argue the                   Read the full paper at:             ADVISES
government's often                        http://evatt.labor.net.au/public
heavy and slow handed                     ations/papers/29.html               IFC Supports Women
approach will make it                                                         Artisans in India
hard for the SOEs to                      Nationalism & globalisation         The International Finance
compete in an                             In his recent talk to the Evatt     Corporation launched an
increasingly integrated                   Foundation, Gavin Kitching          initiative with the Self-
global economy where                      argued a case for free trade        Employed Women's
quick changes demand                      and globalisation, in spite of      Association trade union, one
quick responses.                          his personal misgivings.            of India's leading grassroots
Indonesia's joining of the                Read the full paper at:             poverty-fighting organizations,
World Trade                               http://evatt.labor.net.au/news/     to raise the incomes of
Organization and its                      28.html                             women artisans by tapping
agreeing to free trade                                                        new export markets for their
mean greater exposure                     Globalisation                       handmade goods. Sales are
to competition from                       Let's make short work of            expected to provide income
outside.                                  unemployment writes Ken             for 15,000 poor women in
Supplied by                               O'Hara Globalisation has            disaster-prone areas of
SRI INDAH BUDIARTI
PSI LOCAL COORDINATOR                     three faces writes Adam             Gujarat, site of a devastating
INDONESIA                                 Lucas-                              earthquake in January 2001.
E-mail :                                  The Letters page is at:             http://www.worldbank.org/dev
indah_psiind@email.com
WEBSITE : www.world-psi.org               http://evatt.labor.net.au/letters   elopmentnews/stories/html/05
                                          /                                   1402a.htm
Evatt foundation –
advises Newsletter #5                      Advantage of power                 Water - The Essence of Life
May 2002.                                 liberalization questioned           But Elusive to Many
                                          Moch. N. Kurniawan,                 Access to water is a basic
Workers, Women &                          ( Extract only )The Jakarta         human need, and improving
Superannuation                            Post, 20th MAY 2002                 supply and sanitation is
Greg Combet and Diana                     Debates on the electricity bill,    crucial to reducing poverty.
Olsberg present some of                   which aims to lift the              Yet roughly 1.1 billion people
the major issues.                         monopoly of the state               lack access to improved
Read Greg's article and                   electricity company PT PLN in       water, 2.4 billion live without
Diana's paper at:                         the country's power sector,         improved sanitation, and 4
http://evatt.labor.net.au/                could heat up considerably,         billion do not have sound
news/34.html                              as many legislators now have        wastewater disposal. These
                                          begun to challenge the              and other daunting statistics


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formed the basis for                      governance, and social and          Willem Goudriaan
extensive analysis and                    environmental implications.         jwgoudriaan@epsu.org
discussion at the Water                   Also discussed was how the
                                                                              OECD TO CONTINUE TO
Forum 2002.                               Bank coordinates its various
                                                                              MONITOR KOREAN LABOUR
http://www.worldbank.or                   private sector strategy efforts     RIGHTS
g/developmentnews/stori                   with other poverty reduction        The OECD Committee for
es/html/051702a.htm                       initiatives. This site presents     Employment, Labour and Social
                                          the agenda of the April 23-24       Affairs (ELSA) has
 Financial Globalization:                 forum, with papers,                 recommended the continuation
A Blessing or a Curse?                    presentations and discussion        of a special monitoring
May 30-31, Washington,                    points.                             procedure in order to
sponsored by the Bank                     http://rru.worldbank.org/PSDf       put pressure on the Seoul
and the George                            orum/index.asp                      government to honour its pledge
                                                                              to respect core labour rights.
Washington University
                                                                              The Committee's
Center for Financial                      DID YOU KNOW?                       recommendation was made
Studies, will examine                     Roughly 1.1 billion people          despite efforts by the Korean
globalization and                         lack access to improved             government to have the process
liberalization of the                     water. Deaths from water            suspended. It now goes forward
banking industry, and                     scarcity number 12 million          for endorsement at a
the potential impact on                   each year. Of this total, 3         forthcoming meeting of the
local                                     million are children who            OECD Council. A group of six
economies. The                            tragically die from waterborne      Korean trade unionists from both
conference is open to                     diseases every year.                Federation of Korean Trade
the public, but                                                               Unions (FKTU) and Korean
                                                                              Confederation of Trade Unions
registration required.                    Public services
                                                                              (KCTU) attended an ELSAC
http://www.worldbank.or                   international                       consultation session on 18 April
g/research/conferences/f                  Waghorne on ATTAC                   as part of the TUAC delegation
inancial_globalization.ht                 platform                            to the OECD meeting. PSI
m                                         PSI_s Mike Waghorne was one         thanks those affiliates who took
                                          of three international guests who   up this matter with their
BANGLADESH - Public                       addressed a GATS (General           member governments. Contact
Procurement Reform                        Agreement on Trade in               mike.waghorne@world-psi.org.
http://www.worldbank.or                   Services) seminar in Stockholm
                                          on May 6.                           If need additional advice on
g/pics/pid/bd75016.txt
                                          The seminar, sponsored by           any item or want to contribute
                                          Forum Syd and ATTAC Sweden,         to this bulletin, contact ASU
The Bank’s Private                        discussed major concerns about      National Office,
Sector Strategy                           GATS. These include its impact      Sydney, e-mail
A recent forum looked at                  on poor countries and on public     asunats@syd.asu.asn.au
the implications of the                   services, its restrictions on       Fax: (02) 9283 9270
Bank’s strategy in                        regulatory powers of
                                                                              Attention Greg McLean
private sector                            governments, the secrecy of the
                                          request-offer process, and the      Assistant National
development, and                                                              Secretary.
debated ideas related to                  democratic deficit in GATS
issues such as                            processes generally.
investment climate,
private participation in
infrastructure and social                 TXU EUROPEAN WORKS
sectors, corporate                        COUNCIL SET TO MEET 19TH
                                          JUNE , further details Jan

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