|Viet Nam and its partners recently concluded the negotiations on the EU-Viet Nam Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). — Photo laodong.com.vn
HA NOI (VNS) — The International Labour Organisation (ILO) in Viet Nam has welcomed the Vietnamese Government's commitment to respect, promote and realise the ILO's declared fundamental principles and rights at work in its statement released yesterday.
Viet Nam and its partners recently concluded the negotiations on the EU-Viet Nam Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).
The deals refer to the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work (1998) which commits ILO member countries to respect and comply with eight core conventions covering the key areas of freedom of association, the right to organise and collective bargaining, and elimination of forced labour, child labour and workplace discrimination.
ILO Viet Nam Director Chang-Hee Lee said the commitment showed that Viet Nam was ready to comply fully with the universal principles upheld by ILO member states.
"The ILO is ready to provide its full support, not only for legislative reform but also for strengthening the capacity of the Government, workers and employer's organisations, and for improving institutions and practices so that Viet Nam can fully enjoy the benefits of the FTAs," said Lee.
Under the labour chapters of the TPP and EU-Viet Nam FTA, the country is obliged to reform both its legal system and its institutions and practices to ensure the realisation of the fundamental principles and rights at work, if it is to reap full benefits of the FTAs, according to the statement.
"An industrial relations system based on freedom of association and the recognition of the right to collective bargaining is a common feature of modern market economies," the head of ILO Viet Nam said.
He added that there was broad support in the global community, including the US and the EU, for Viet Nam's successful reform.
Viet Nam became a member of the ILO in 1992 and has ratified 21 ILO conventions, including five out of eight core ones.
The EU and Viet Nam reached an agreement in principle for an FTA in August 2015 whereas the negotiations among 12 Pacific Rim countries for the TPP concluded last October.
About 5,000 Vietnamese children, who are engaged in child labour or at high-risk of entering child labour, will receive support through a project to provide educational services and improve working conditions for those under legal working age, announced yesterday in Ha Noi.
The project, titled "Enhancing national capacity to prevent and reduce child labour in Viet Nam", was announced by the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs (MOLISA), the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the US Department of Labour.
Under the project, 2,000 poor households whose children are engaged in child labour or at high-risk of entering child labour, will be supported through value-chain development and value-adding approaches.
Deputy Minister Dao Hong Lan, said that child labour was believed to cause harmful effects on children's health and psychological development, limits their school attendance and inhibits their transition to decent productive work.
ILO Viet Nam Country Director Chang-Hee Lee said, "Child labour is a complex phenomenon requiring comprehensive responses that involves simultaneous action across a range of policy sectors."
Changing perceptions and motivating action to eliminate child labour among all levels of society was very important, he said.
The project will be run in four priority production sectors where child labour is predominate: garments and handicrafts in HCM City, agriculture and fisheries in An Giang province, and handicrafts in Ha Noi.
The project, set to be finished in 2019, was financed by US$8 million from the US Department of Labour and $1.2 million from MOLISA.
Statistics from the National Child Labour Survey conducted in 2012 by the GSO in co-operation with MOLISA and ILO showed that 1.75 million children are engaged in child labour in Viet Nam. — VNS