ILO priorities during the pandemic and beyond: Subregional programming meeting

How to organize activity of the International Labour Organization during the pandemic and beyond? What experience has been accumulated in the past year? What are the lessons learned? These issues were high on the agenda of the ILO Subregional Meeting.

News | 26 November 2020

The meeting was held 24 – 25 November 2020 in an online format. ILO staff from the countries of the subregion and their colleagues from ILO Headquarters in Geneva took part in the event.

The objectives of the meeting were: to identify the key strategies of the ILO response to COVID-19, and how they support the implementation of the ILO Centenary Declaration at the country level; better understand the ILO role in the United Nations Sustainable Development Cooperation Framework development and implementation and implications for ILO country programming (DWCPs); elaborate new modalities to strengthen the ILO position within the UN family at the country level and to facilitate the delivery of the agreed commitments under the P&B 2020-21.

КIn his opening statement Heinz Koller, Assistant Director-General and Regional Director for Europe and Central Asia of the International Labour Organization (ILO) noted that COVID-19 pandemic has an impact on the strategy of the ILO. At the same time, “the crisis has confirmed full relevance of the Organization’s mandate, international labour standards and the human-centered approach promoted by the Centenary Declaration.”

Amongst some of the main results achieved by the ILO Heinz Koller referred to various analytical and monitoring products, especially country response database, and national social protection system surveys.

“Last year we went online and focused our efforts on supporting national institutions, first of all Labour Inspectorate, Public Employment Services, as well as workers’ and employers’ organizations,” said Olga Koulaeva, Director of the ILO Decent Work Technical Support Team and Country Office for Eastern Europe and Central Asia. The main areas of work are assistance in the drafting of national legislation, also based on ILO’s Teleworking Guide; policy advice; and support to the constituents in developing integrated (employment and social protection) national strategies.

The objectives of the meeting were fully met. The findings of the meeting regarding the ILO COVID-19 response interventions in the sub-region and technical support provided to constituents will be summarized and documented in the final report, alongside with experience, good practices and lessons learnt from the engagement in the development of new UN Cooperation Frameworks.

The meeting has also allowed to identify new techniques and implementation modalities to improve the effectiveness of the ILO support to constituents, secure the ILO footprint and visibility within the UN family and accelerate the delivery of the agreed results for 2020-2021. In consultations with the Office management and technical specialists, the road map to implement the proposals will be developed.

It was also agreed to review the DWT-CO Moscow Subregional Strategy for 2019-2023 to reflect the response to COVID-19 and adjust the ILO priorities and focus of work in the sub-region to the new situation.