A tripartite delegation led by Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resources Development Minister Sajid Hussain Turi met with the Director-General of the International Labour Organisation (ILO), Gilbert F Houngbo, sharing the government’s willingness to volunteer as a pilot country to initiate a national chapter of the Global Coalition for Social Justice.
In his meeting with the ILO chief, the minister said that Pakistan shares his vision of the need for the coalition. He also appreciated the support provided by the organisation’s Islamabad office towards the flood affectees of Sindh and Balochistan.
“Given the scale of the disaster and those affected by it, I would urge you to consider enhancing the level of cash for work programme that we started with limited resources,” a statement by the ministry read.
Extending best wishes for the coalition by Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, who was unable to participate in the World of Work Summit, Turi said Pakistan is currently in the process of developing a World of Work Crisis Response Strategy with support from ILO’s country office.
“This strategy aims to provide essential guidance to all stakeholders, both at the federal and provincial levels, on how to effectively respond to crises with a focus on preserving jobs and employment,” the statement mentioned.
The minister, in meeting with Houngbo, said that Islamabad has recently launched the fourth phase of the Decent Work Country Program 2023-2027, with the technical assistance of the ILO.
“It is our hope that the priorities outlined in the program will be jointly addressed by the three constituents, with the technical support of the ILO.”
The minister also requested ILO’s support in developing employment as well as labour policies for Pakistan. “Job creation is a high priority for us and we would like to invite programmatic and project-based support in job creation programmes.”
He added that the government is also eager to participate as one of the pathfinder countries for the UN Secretary-General’s initiative on the global accelerator on jobs and social protection for just transitions.
“To advance this agenda in Pakistan, we are in the process of establishing an inter-ministerial committee on just transition. We aim to collaborate with international partners to receive their support in this endeavour,” the ministry stated.
Turi also apprised the head of ILO about prioritising ratification of the latest Occupational safety and health (OSH) conventions — C-155 and C-187. He also invited him to visit Pakistan at his earliest convenience.