BMZ and ILO scale up cooperation Forging a joint path towards decent work worldwide

Gilbert Houngbo, Director-General of the ILO, and German Development Minister Svenja Schulze at the signing of an agreement on an even closer partnership between the BMZ and the ILO.
Gilbert Houngbo, Director-General of the ILO, and German Development Minister Svenja Schulze at the signing of an agreement on an even closer partnership between the BMZ and the ILO.

29. November 2022 | Development Minister Schulze says: “Decent work is a central lever for fighting poverty. It helps boost resilience in times of crisis and has a stabilising effect on social cohesion. Because of that, creating decent jobs and improving working conditions in global supply chains are both an objective and an aspiration of German development policy. The International Labour Organization (ILO) is a key strategic partner for the BMZ. I am very pleased that, in my meeting today with the ILO’s new Director-General Gilbert Houngbo, we have been able to map out joint priorities for us to work on together in an even closer partnership of cooperation in the future.”

Mari Pangestu, Managing Director Development Policy and Partnerships of the World Bank, Federal Minister Svenja Schulze and Gilbert Houngbo, Director-General of the ILO, at the press conference on 29 November 2022 in Berlin on deepening cooperation between BMZ, ILO and the World Bank in the field of social protection.

Labour markets worldwide are facing enormous challenges. In Africa alone, 25 million new jobs will need to be created each year in order to offer the continent’s young people some kind of prospects for the future. Underemployment, informal working and precarious employment situations continue to be widespread in developing countries and emerging economies, with women and young people tending to be more affected. According to the ILO, in 2020 alone around 255 million jobs were lost as a result of the pandemic. The negative impacts on the economies of developing and emerging countries due to Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine are making an already strained situation even worse.

In view of these challenges, Minister Schulze and ILO Director-General Houngbo have agreed to work together even more closely on shared priorities in the future. This cooperation will focus on joint efforts to improve working conditions and raise wages in global supply chains, on achieving gender equality for women in the labour market and on eliminating child labour. The ILO is also an indispensable partner in contexts of displacement and crisis. Furthermore, the BMZ is championing the ILO/UN Global Accelerator for Jobs and Social Protection initiative with its aim of creating 400 million decent jobs and enabling access to social protection for four billion people.

Another priority area of the cooperation between the BMZ and the ILO is shaping the transformation in the world of work. The green transformation of the economy is an existential task both in Germany and also in developing countries and emerging economies around the world. The German government is therefore championing a Just Transition and with it the socially compatible transition of the world’s economies and societies.

Under the German Presidency of the G7, its member countries have decided to widen their efforts to support green employment and strengthen green competencies in developing countries and emerging economies during the period up to 2025. The ILO is contributing its technical expertise to assist with the implementation of this commitment. A first joint project with the ILO aimed at supporting women’s employment in green sectors will begin in Senegal in 2023.

See also

Cashew processing in Ghana
A woman in Burundi reads by the light of a solar-powered table lamp.
The 2022 G7 Summit is due to take place from 26 to 28 June 2022 at Schloss Elmau in the Bavarian Alps.