South African MNCS in Africa – Trends in 2010 / 2011.

As companies have stretched their operations and supply chains across the globe, so international trade law
has assisted them in accessing new markets and new resources. However, this global economy, while granting
Multinational Corporations (MNCs) new freedoms and opportunities, has not been accompanied by
globalisation of social rights, labour rights and ultimately human rights to the workers within those companies.
Companies have spread in search of new profit opportunities which have often meant seeking out areas of the
globe where resources, including human resources, can be had very cheaply and without restriction. The
situation is bad for both workers in the home countries of these companies, as jobs flow outwards to where
the work can be done more cheaply, and workers in the new host countries, where they have to work without
the protections and benefits afforded those in the country of origin.
The focus of the research and reporting here is aimed at building capacity among unions at national, regional
and global levels to address this imbalance of power for the benefit of workers wherever they may be.