BRICS Countries to Cooperate on Labor, Employment
UN Photo/Rick Bajornas
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The Third BRICS Labour and Employment Ministers’ meeting discussed skills-driven development and a universally sustainable social security system.

Ministers highlighted the role of labour and employment policies in addressing work challenges around the world and stressed the importance of enhancing skills to alleviate poverty.

27 July 2017: Ministers from Brazil, the Russian Federation, India, China, and South Africa (BRICS) discussed labor and employment policies during the Third BRICS Labour and Employment Ministers’ meeting. Participants stressed the importance of coordination and sharing experiences and good practices and highlighted the importance of skills-driven development and a universally sustainable social security.

Ministers emphasized that the BRICS countries should cooperate to ensure stable employment, boost employment and inclusive growth, and enhance skills to alleviate poverty. Discussions focused on governance of the future of work and on poverty alleviation and reduction through skills. Participants further highlighted steps that BRICS have taken to promote social security cooperation and to establish a network of labor research institutes.

In his address at the meeting, International Labour Organization (ILO) Director-General Guy Ryder renewed the ILO’s commitment to supporting BRICS countries, which represent 48% of the global population and 21% of the world’s production.

Yin Weimin, Minister of Human Resources and Social Security, China, said progress in science and technology and economic and demographic changes have presented challenges to labor markets globally and urged international cooperation in addressing them. He stressed that BRICS should work together on social security systems, cultural exchange in the labor market and mechanisms for future collaboration. He added that China aims to improve employment quality through vocational training,

The agenda of the meeting, which convened in Chongqing, China, from 26-27 July 2017, aligned with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the ILO Centenary Initiative on the Future of Work, which is entering its second phase with the launch of a high-level Global Commission on the Future of Work. The Commission will report to the centenary International Labour Conference in 2019. Discussions and outcomes will contribute to SDG 8 (decent work and economic growth) and SDG 1 (no poverty), among others.

The meeting resulted in a declaration that will contribute to the BRICS Leaders’ Summit in Xiamen, China, from 3-5 September 2017. [ILO News Story] [ILO Director-General Statement] [BRICS Information Center Website] [BRICS Summit Website]

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