Myanmar trade unions appeal against withdrawal of EU GSP

02 Jan '19
2 min read
Courtesy: rawpixel.com from Pexels
Courtesy: rawpixel.com from Pexels

The Union of Myanmar Federation of Chamber of Commerce and Industry (UMFCCI), the Confederation of Trade Union of Myanmar (CTUM) and the Myanmar Industries, Craft and Services Trade Unions Federation (MICS) recently appealed against the withdrawal of the European Union’s (EU) generalised scheme of preferences (GSP). The EU had reinstated GSP for Myanmar in 2013.

The trade unions said they will continue to support ongoing reforms and programmes to respect human and labour rights that underpin the granting of the trade preferences, according to Myanmarese media reports.

The removal of GSP serves only to exacerbate the existing socio-economic hardships faced by a labour market that is still fragile and undeveloped and the main impact would be felt by grassroots employees through job losses and destruction of livelihoods that could derail ongoing reforms and programmes towards decent work and industrial peace, according to a statement issued by the unions.

A full withdrawal of the GSP for Myanmar would lead to higher import tariffs, which would put Myanmar at a competitive disadvantage in the EU market, the World Bank said in its annual report on Myanmar. This will likely have a significant impact on foreign direct investments, it said.

If the EU withdraws GSP, investors who invest in Myanmar to gain access to the EU export market will no longer be attracted, said U Aung Naing Oo, director general of the Directorate of Investment and Company Administration, last month. (DS)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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