The ILO Regional Office, based at ILO Headquarters in Geneva, covers 51 countries of Europe and Central Asia (see list of countries) with more than 900 million persons from Lisbon to Vladivostok and Reykjavik to Dushanbe. The ILO relationship and cooperation with Member countries are facilitated by presence in countries through Decent Work Teams and Country Offices (DWT/CO), as follows.
Under the responsibility of the ILO DWT/CO in Moscow are the following countries: Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russian Federation, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
Under the responsibility of the ILO DWT/CO in Budapest are the following countries: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czechia, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia and Ukraine. The Office also covers activities in Kosovo as defined by the UN Security Council Resolution 1244 (1999).
The assistance provided by both DWT/CO is largely based on technical advisory services, covering both policy and practical issues. They also play a leading role in the implementation of several important development cooperation projects. The overarching objective of ILO assistance to all these countries is to anchor decent work firmly as a national goal and to contribute to its implementation through the Decent Work Country Programmes (DWCPs).
ILO country Offices
The ILO has an Office in Brussels ensuring the liaison with the European Union Institutions and the Benelux countries, as well as a network of Offices in Ankara, Berlin, Lisbon, Madrid, Paris and Rome (also covering San Marino). All other countries are serviced by the Regional Office in Geneva.
The ILO's work is also facilitated by the presence of National Coordinators in a number of countries - currently in Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, North Macedonia, Serbia, Tajikistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan. They are instrumental in liaising with the ILO on a daily basis, in consulting on priorities and outcomes of ILO cooperation and enhancing the ILO's visibility at national level.
Priorities for the European and Central Asian Region
The region is extremely diverse with a rapidly changing geopolitical and economic context. After years of recovery following the financial and economic crisis, most countries have progressively returned to growth, though unevenly. However, many challenges remain across the region, due to deep transformations of the world of work driven by technological advances, the uncertain path of globalisation, climate change and demographic pressures. Quality job creation, skills development, youth employment, transition from informal to formal economy, social protection, social dialogue and promotion of labour standards remain essential issues in the region, but new concerns have emerged. Working poverty and growing inequalities as well as the development of non-standards forms of work require new responses, as reaffirmed by the 10th European Regional Meeting held in October 2017 in Istanbul that has adopted the "Istanbul Initiative for the Centenary: Future for Decent Work for strong and responsible social partnership in Europe and Central Asia".