Asia-Pacific union leaders gather in Port Moresby to kick off regional maritime federation

Maritime union leaders from across the Asia-Pacific region will chart out the future of a proposed regional maritime federation in a high level meeting convening on November 13 in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.

The leaders represent key maritime unions in the region: the Maritime Union of Australia (MUA), Maritime Union of New Zealand (MUNZ), and Papua New Guinea Maritime and Transport Workers Union (PNGMTU).

The one-day conference will analyse the maritime trends in the area and debate the outlines of the federation’s goals, strategy, and governance.

“When it comes to the future of workers in the maritime industry in the Asia-Pacific region, there are no borders,” MUA national secretary and International Transport Workers Federation president Paddy Crumlin said.

“Our livelihoods and working conditions will be protected and enhanced by building strategies, campaigns and advancing our mutual interests in unison.

“We will maintain the integrity and special identity of each union but, indeed, our regional coordination will bolster the future for all maritime workers in each nation.”

MUNZ general secretary Joe Fleetwood added: “Our region will continue to see great growth in commerce across the oceans and our goal is to make sure that the workers who make sure goods move efficiently from nation to nation share in the bounty of economic prosperity.”

PNGMTU secretary Reg McAlister, who is serving as the host, said: “Our alliance with our neighbours goes back many years and we see great potential in a federation that will enhance our capacity in PNG.”

The conference will take place at the Lamana Hotel in Port Moresby. Among the dignitaries who will address the conference are the Honorable Michael Malabag, PNG’s Health Minister and the Honorable Ano Pala, PNG’s Transport Minister.

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