Minister of State Pat Breen told the 108th session of the International Labour Conference (ILO) yesterday in Geneva that Ireland was the 29thMember State to ratify the Forced Labour Protocol.
The Irish Government is fully committed to the adoption of a convention which can be widely ratified, he said.
“The strong relationship which we have with our social partners is fundamental to our ability to play an active role within the ILO, and this was amply demonstrated by the cooperation from social partners, ICTU and Ibec, in respect of the ratification process,” he said.
This is the ILO’s centenary year and the minister said its continued work will be key to ensuring a brighter future for everyone in the changing world of work.
He said that many of the elements in the report of the ILO’s Global Commission on the Future of Work are reflected in the Irish Government’s Future Jobs initiative.
“Ireland’s economic turnaround over the past seven years has been remarkable.
“However, there is no room for complacency as Ireland faces a range of new challenges, including declining productivity levels in SMEs, infrastructural constraints, skills deficits and labour availability, as well as concentrations in some sectors and markets,” he said.
Minister Breen met with Ireland’s tripartite delegation which includes senior officials from his own Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation, as well as senior representatives of both Ibec and ICTU and congratulated them on their strong input to the business of the conference and its committees.
The ILO, one of the UN’s oldest agencies, was founded in 1919 and brings together governments, employer and worker representatives of 187 countries to develop international labour standards and policies to promote decent work and social justice.
Ireland became a member of the ILO in 1923, this was the first international organisation which the new State joined.