“This is a global crisis and it needs global solutions. We are experiencing a downturn in global economic development,” admits the pillars of the world economic and social order – the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), World Bank (WB), International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Trade Organisation (WTO), International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the German Chancellor – in their February 2009 joint statement.1
We, the labour and migration groups and advocates in Asia, assert that this is a comprehensive and multi-faceted social, economic, financial and environmental crisis. “It is a systematic crisis, a crisis of the development model,” as we declared at the 2009 World Social Forum in Belem, Brazil.2
This crisis is the latest eruption of the compounded effects and devastation of the neoliberal development ideology espoused by the “Washington Consensus”, and systematically imposed since the end of World War II by the Bretton Woods institutions (IMF, WB, WTO), the OECD, global capitalists and multinational corporations. This will not be the last, or the worst economic crisis, especially for the workers, migrants, women, and the poor, marginalised and vulnerable peoples in Asia and the world.