Trade Union Forum

I BRICS Trade Union Forum Declaration (Moskow, December 11,2012)

Declaration of the BRICS Trade Union Forum

Moscow, December 11,2012

Trade unions of the Federative Republic of Brazil, the Russian Federation, the Republic of India, the People's Republic of China and the Republic of South Africa, uniting over 200 million organized workers, welcome and actively support the processes of the BRICS crystallization – establishment of a new structure of global governance and cooperation.

Today BRICS represents 25 per cent of the world GDP, the second, the fourth and the eighth world economies, and 30 per cent of the Earth’s surface. During the last seven years, over 50 per cent of world economic growth has been due to the BRICS member States.  Now and for foreseeable future, they are the locomotive of the world economic development.

BRICS trade unions, which represent the largest workers’ unions of Asia, Africa, Europe and Latin America, cannot stay on the margins of new transcontinental partnerships at the inter-State level. They see their task in conferring to these partnerships a progressive social dimension aimed at defending the legitimate interests and rights of working people.

Trade unions of the Federative Republic of Brazil, the Russian Federation, the Republic of India, the People's Republic of China and the Republic of South Africa endorse the statement of the Delhi Declaration of the BRICS Summit that BRICS is a platform for dialogue and cooperation amongst countries that represent 43% of the world’s population, for the promotion of peace, security and development in a multi-polar, inter-dependent and increasingly complex, globalizing world.

Like the leaders of our States, we envision a future marked by global peace, economic and social progress and enlightened scientific progress. We stand ready to work with others, developed and developing countries together, on the basis of universally recognized norms of international law – and, first and foremost, on the basis of the standards and principles of the International Labour Organization (ILO) - to deal with the challenges and the opportunities before the world today. Strengthened representation of emerging and developing countries in the institutions of global governance will enhance their effectiveness in achieving this objective.

We believe that it is critical for advanced economies to adopt responsible macroeconomic and financial policies, avoid creating excessive global liquidity and undertake structural reforms to lift growth that create decent jobs and sources of incomes for millions of workers and for their families. 

For us, as for the State leaders who signed the Delhi Declaration, accelerating growth and sustainable development, along with food, and energy security, are amongst the most important challenges facing the world today, and central to addressing economic development, eradicating poverty and child labour, and combating hunger and malnutrition in many developing countries. Creating decent jobs needed to improve people’s living standards worldwide is critical. Sustainable development is also a key element of our agenda for global recovery and investment for future growth. Together with the Governments of our countries we owe this responsibility to our future generations.

We consider that sustainable development should be the main paradigm in environmental issues, as well as for economic and social strategies. We acknowledge the relevance and focus of the main themes of the Green Economy in the context of Sustainable Development and Poverty Eradication (GESDPE) as well as the Institutional Framework for Sustainable Development (IFSD).

Trade unions are ready to take up their place in these processes, and above all in the area of creation of decent jobs, protection of labour, defense of workers’ interests and attainment of social justice. 

We underscore our commitment to work together in the UN to continue our cooperation and strengthen multilateral approaches on issues pertaining to global peace and security in the years to come. In doing so, we single out the special role of the ILO, the custodian of workers’ interests in the multilateral system; we stand ready to contribute to progressive actions of BRICS members States in this as well as in the other UN specialized agencies. 

The Millennium Development Goals remain a fundamental milestone in the development agenda. To enable developing countries to obtain maximal results in attaining their Millennium Development Goals by the agreed time-line of 2015, we must ensure that growth in these countries is not affected. Any slowdown would have serious consequences for the world economy. Attainment of the MDGs is fundamental to ensuring inclusive, equitable and sustainable global growth and requires continued focus on these goals even beyond 2015.

On the basis of the above-stated principles, we declare the setting-up of a BRICS Trade Union Forum as a means of dialogue and cooperation among our peoples, striving to confer to BRICS a social dimension underpinned by the ILO Decent Work concept.

We suggest to the BRICS member States to include the issue of Social dialogue and of cooperation with Trade unions in the Delhi Action Plan as a new area of cooperation (consistent with Paragraph 17 of the Action Plan).

As a first step in this direction, we proclaim our readiness to participate in the future BRICS Youth Policy Dialogue (paragraph 17 (iii) of the Action Plan).

We declare furthermore our willingness to make a constructive contribution to the discussion of issues touching upon workers’ interests in the framework of the preparation and holding of the next BRICS Summit in 2013 in South Africa.


For Central Única dos Trabalhadores (CUT), Brazil:                               ___________________

                                                                                                                      Nilton Souza da Silva


                                                                                                                      International Relations

For Força Sindical (FS), Brazil:                                                                   ___________________

                                                                                                                      João Antonio Felicio

                                                                                                                      International Secretary

For All China Federation of Trade Unions (ACFTU):                               ___________________

                                                                                                                      Jiang Guangping


                                                                                                                      Executive Committee

For Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC):                              ___________________

                                                                                                                      Shantha Kumar

                                                                                                                      General Secretary


For the Federation of Independent Trade Unions of Russia (FNPR):   ___________________

                                                                                                                      Mikhail Shmakov


For the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU)                  ___________________

Moscow, December 11, 2012