Tens of thousands of workers marked May Day in Dhaka, Bangladesh, with a huge demonstration calling for safer working conditions, stronger labour laws and better wages.
The protests have added significance following the Rana Plaza and Tazneen Fashion tragedies which left 1,240 employees dead.
Shamima Nasrin, a member of a garment workers union, explained what they want: “Our demand on this May Day is that legal measures are guaranteed against the owner of Rana Plaza. We also hope that compensation is in place for those workers whose dead bodies are still missing. And the injured must be compensated based on loss of future earnings.”
In the centre of Kuala Lumpur unions gathered to protest against the government’s proposed goods and services tax which is due to come into force next year.
The move is intended to reduce Malaysia’s debt, but many say the burden will fall on ordinary consumers.
In Hong Kong a better work-life balance formed the rallying cry with workers calling for eight hours work, eight hours free time and eight hours rest.