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ILO declaration urges countries to ensure labour protection

GS Paper 3

Syllabus: Indian Economy and issues relating to Planning, Mobilization of Resources, Growth, Development and Employment


Source: TH

 Direction: The article covers Singapore Declaration, which highlights certain reforms to ensure labour protection, and measures to be taken by governments. Do look out for the previous articles on labour published recently- New labour codes give a free hand to employers: Unions and The lingering crisis of labour post-pandemic

Context: The 17th Asia-Pacific Regional Meeting (APRM) of the ILO set 10-point priorities of national action for the members to deal with the issue of dwindling wages, inflation and unemployment.


Background: The tripartite (governments, employers and workers) declaration – the “Singapore Declaration”, adopted by the delegates agreed to address labour market challenges and find solutions to crises like the pandemic, natural disasters and economic uncertainty.


Highlights of the Singapore Declaration:

  • The governments must strengthen governance frameworks and ensure –
    • Labour protection through the promotion of freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining.
    • Rights of migrant workers, including improved accommodation, protection of wages and extension of social protection, etc.
  • It called for closing gender gaps through measures that –
    • Increase women’s labour force participation,
    • Promote equal pay for equal work and responsibilities, and
    • Promote women’s leadership.
  • Governments and social partners should urgently take effective measures to address allegations of serious violations of these rights.



Measures suggested in the declaration: Governments must –

  • Develop inclusive labour market programmes and policies.
  • Implement collective and determined efforts to accelerate a smooth transition from the informal to formal economy.
  • Facilitate the transition to peace, security and decent work in situations of crisis.
  • Recognise the impact of climate change and develop national plans that help build environmentally sustainable economies and societies.
  • Frame policies to regulate labour migration to coordinate labour mobility and social protection and harness opportunities arising from labour migration.


Way ahead in the declaration:

  • Strengthening the foundation for social and employment protection, especially for workers in the informal economy.
  • The capacities and skills of the employer, worker representatives and governments must be strengthened.
  • Recognising that strong and representative organisations of workers and employers are key to achieving social justice and decent work.


Conclusion: Social dialogue is key to building trust and resilient labour market institutions are essential to sustained recovery and inclusive and sustainable growth.

International Labour Organization (ILO) is the only tripartite U.N. agency, since 1919. It brings together governments, employers and workers of 187 member States, to set labour standards, develop policies and devise programmes promoting decent work for all women and men

Insta Links:

New labour codes give a free hand to employers: Unions


Mains Links:

Q. What are the issues with current labour laws in the country? Examine the need for carrying out labour reforms to progress the performance of India’s manufacturing sector. (250 words)