Oman: A New Trade Union Centre is Born

With the completion of its Founding Congress on 15 February, the General Federation of Oman Trade Unions (GFOTU) becomes the world’s newest national trade union centre. Following a 2006 Decree by the Sultan of Oman permitting the establishment of trade unions, some 70 individual unions have been established.

Fifty of these, having already completed their own elections, were represented at the Congress which brought together some 100 delegates. Saoud Ali Abdullah Al Jabri was elected GFOTU president, along with an 11-person Executive including two women.

“The ITUC’s Annual Survey on Trade Union Rights Violations for 2009 recognised that while positive steps were being taken in the Sultanate, there are serious problems for large parts of the country’s workforce, especially migrant workers in construction and in domestic work. The creation of the GFOTU is a very significant important step towards ensuring respect for workers’ rights, and the ITUC looks forward to working with the new organisation,” said ITUC General Secretary Guy Ryder, who addressed the opening of the Congress.