Continuity and Change in Indonesian Labour Relations in the Habibie Interregnum Michele Ford Department of History and Politics Wollongong University There were considerable changes in Indonesia's industrial relations climate and regulatory framework during the Habibie interregnum. This article explores the implications of those changes for informal workers' organizations, unions and labour- oriented NGOs. The article is divided into two sections. The first section reflects upon the philosophy, institutions and practice of labour relations under Suharto's New Order and describes organized opposition to the industrial relations system, while the second describes the ways in which labour relations and representation changed during the Habibie interregnum. The collapse of the rupiah, the fall of Suharto, and the subsequent disintegration of the New Order's corporatist state system during the Habibie interregnum had mixed implications for Indonesia's labour movement. Labour activists did not - as Hadiz (1997:188) had predicted they may - seize the opportunity to press their demands as factions within the elite jockeyed for power in the post-Suharto vacuum. Rather, in contrast to the dominance of labour concerns in the late New Order press, labour issues became seemingly lost in Indonesia's collective fixation on the process of political reform and the
Asian Journal of Social Science – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 2000
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