included an interview with our President Pevrul Kavlak.
We organized the 3rd edition of the Standing Conference of the Euro-Mediterranean Metal Industry Trade Unions, which was created with the joint venture of your union and FIM-CISL and which we continue to support with great courage. How do you think this initiative can help develop relations between trade unions in the Mediterranean region?
“This experience was inspired by an experience we had years ago. Sindnova with Italian trade union organizations, first in Italy, then in Turkey, we held two meetings related to the automotive industry. These meetings were successful and we saw that the metal unions of the two countries and other Mediterranean countries are organized in the same or similar workplaces. These unions have common problems and need a common line of struggle. Since our union Türk Metal was not yet a member of IndustriALL at that time, we went to institutionalize this relationship with FIM-CISL in a different way. This year we organized the third Euro-Mediterranean Permanent Conference of Metal Trade Unions. Apart from our Italian friends, there were important contributions from France, Spain and other Mediterranean countries. As I see it, participation has increased and diversified this year. I must express my great pleasure. There is a need for other communication channels among the participating unions, apart from the annual conference. We have to do projects and research together. We must develop relationships between our members working in the same multinational companies. We need to implement labor exchange programs. We need to improve relations with smaller meetings every three months, except for the big conference we hold every year. ”
Turkish Metalworkers’ Union recently became a member of IndustriALL Global Union. Since the beginning of this process, FIM-CISL has been struggling to enable a trade union existing on the border of East and West to transfer its views to the international platform and to share these views there. What opportunities do you think IndustriALL Global Union will offer you?
“Türk Metal was a member of the top organizations both at the global level and in Europe. This membership was interrupted for a while. We are now a member of IndustriALL Global Union again. Hopefully, we will soon become a member of ındustriAll Europe. As you said, our country is on the border of East and West. Although it contains all the characteristics of the East, we are a country turned to the West in a period of almost a hundred years. It is Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, one of the most contemporary leaders in the world, who shows us this direction. We are on the way to the contemporary civilization it has shown. For us, the importance of IndustriALL membership stems from this. We are organized in multinational companies operating in our country. In other words, the majority of our employers are European, American… Therefore, it is necessary to negotiate internationally with these employers, to be together with our Western class brothers who work in the same employers and to make our struggle common. Therefore, IndustriALL membership constitutes an important line of struggle for us, apart from a mere membership relationship. I just mentioned it, I see it useful to repeat. I would like to thank all our friends, especially FIM-CISL, for supporting us in this process. ”