ILO Project Manager Cerilyn Pastolero explained that Region XII was selected by the partners, based on a set of criteria, as one of the potential pilot regions for the project due to the strong and thriving presence of the fishing industry in the region, the existence of its tripartite mechanism under the FITC, and the possibility for success, growth and potential for positive impact to the fishing sector. The Project can also contribute to efforts of the industry to cope with the growing demand for due diligence on labour rights and traceability in exporting industries such as fishing.
Twenty-seven (27) representatives (15 female, 12 male) from the government, employers, and workers groups attended the meeting and shared recent developments taking place in the fishing industry in the region, such as the status of labour inspection among commercial fishing vessels, working conditions in the sector and , incidence of apprehended fishing workers and vessels abroad, among others.
During the meeting, the Project presented possible areas for collaboration with the industry to enhance labour governance in the sector, to include labour standards enforcement, promotion of technical advisory services to promote compliance, supporting inter-agency collaboration and strengthening of social dialogue for sustained compliance at the workplace, community and industry levels.
The Project will start its activities in the region through the conduct of a Project Baseline and Sectoral Assessment in its target sectors of agriculture, fishing and mining. This will gather baseline data on project indicators including on working conditions, and analysis of drivers of compliance and non-compliance, to aid Project partners in the identification of more specific strategies under the Project.