Thursday, December 09, 2004
PRC suddenly cancels meeting on workers' rights
The influential Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development has announced that an approved meeting of global union and business leaders scheduled for next week in the Peoples Republic of China has been canceled due to the PRC government revoking visas issued to foreign participants.
The NewYork Times reports the PRC is claiming "inconvinient timing" as its excuse for blocking the meeting.
"This is the right time not the wrong time to discuss the rights of workers in China," John Evans, an OECD official based in Paris, said in a statement. "Labor standards of Chinese workers are now in the world spotlight and that spotlight is not about to be turned off."
According to the New York Times, US and EU labor unions have been pressing for years to communicate more directly with China's state-run union monopoly and the country's Communist Party leaders. Addressing worker issues under the aegis of the OECD, which includes 30 wealthy nations, was seen as a step toward that goal.