Integrated policy response on employment and social protection in the context of COVID-19 crisis mitigation and recovery, supported by social dialogue


Ministry of Labour, Migration and Employment
Ministry of Healthcare and Social Protection
Federation of Independent Trade Unions
Employers Organisations

Project Objectives:

Tajikistan's economy has been growing steadily in the past decade, with real GDP growth equaling 4.5% in 2020. Since 2010, the growth rate of the economy has marked an annual average rate of 6.8%. The absolute poverty level decreased from about 45% in 2010 down to 27.5% in 2019. However, poverty may be increasing as a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic as the non-contributory social protection programmes effectively cover less than 10% of population. Tajikistan’s immediate response to COVID-19 focuses on building capacity of the health system and ensuring food security for the population. At the same time, efforts are underway to re-adjust employment and social protection policies to ensure access to existing schemes with limited coverage; respond to preservation of livelihoods and inclusion of disadvantaged groups.

In 2020, Tajikistan’s working-age population (aged 15-64) comprised 62.2% of its total population (5.795 million), including around 75,000 people with disabilities and 728,958 pensioners. New and better jobs are one of the most effective means to reduce poverty, but Tajikistan has consistently struggled at this, which led many of its citizens to seek work abroad, in informal economy or vial informal labour in formal economy.
 Throughout collaboration with the Republic of Tajikistan ILO had provided extensive technical support for formalizing the informal employment in formal enterprises, employment policy and promotion of employment, social protection system improvement skills building and strengthening social dialogue.

Building on this collaboration, the overall objective of the project is to build the capacities of the National Tripartite constituents and other stakeholders in designing, implementing and monitoring the national employment, social protection and formalization strategies and programmes in line with the international standards

Main Activities:  

  • Capacity development of the national tripartite constituents and other stakeholders
  • Technical support to develop employment, social protection and policies supporting transition from informal to formal economy
  • Research, data collection, analysis and costing t to provide evidence based policy making approaches
  • Enhancing the social dialogue

Project Outcomes:

  • Introduction of an integrated and comprehensive approach to policy design, guided by ILO Centenary Declaration, principles of decent work and relevant ILS, leading to improved national employment policies underpinning COVID19 crisis impact mitigation and post crisis recovery;
  • Strengthened intergovernmental coordination mechanisms of social protection and employment programmes, as well as the governance of, and links between social protection and employment institutions;
  • National social protection programmes re-adjusted and costed with a view to making them gender-responsive and inclusive of informal economy workers, self-employed and those in non-standard forms of employment relations, addressing short-term emergency measures and strengthening medium- and long-term solutions in line with the ILO C102 and R202;
  • The ILO constituents are equipped with tools helping to extend social protection coverage to workers in the informal economy; the existing approach to formalisation improved to extend the recognition of employment relationships and access to labour protection and the social insurance coverage;
  • Capacities of worker’s and employer’s organisations, and the National Tripartite Commission in designing, implementing and monitoring integrated employment and social protection policies, as well as policies leading to formalization are improved;
  • Exchange of knowledge and collaboration between the tripartite constituents of Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan on addressing informality, is facilitated, in the framework of South-South cooperation