ILO organized a seminar under the India-EU CAMM project to share findings of a study on social security agreement between India and EU Member States

Welcoming address by Mr Satoshi Sasaki, Deputy Director, DWT South Asia and India Country Office at the Seminar on Social Security Agreements between India and EU Member State.

Statement | New Delhi | 22 November 2021
Namaste and Good Afternoon!

On behalf of the ILO, I am pleased to be here today to share the findings of a study on the effectiveness of social security agreements between India and EU Member States. The study focused on the implementation and actual benefits of these agreements for employees, employers, countries of origin and destination.

The Government of India and the European Union endorsed the Common Agenda for Migration and Mobility (CAMM) in 2016 with a commitment for cooperation and dialogues in the areas of regular and irregular migration, migration and development and international protection issues. Along with the International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD), the ILO was selected to provide technical assistance to this policy dialogue. And ICM is a local partner in this project.

Recognising the importance of social security in the better governance of migration and mobility, the priority area of CAMM stated that the two sides will work towards maximising the development impact of migration and mobility, including through cooperation and social security issues between India and the EU and Member States. In fact, India signed its’ first social security agreement with Belgium, and 12 of India’s 20 social security agreements are with EU Member States.

Being a standard setting organisation of the UN for the world of work, with a mandate to protect migrant workers, the ILO has two specific conventions - Equality of Treatment Convention of 1962 and Maintenance of Social Rights Convention of 1982, besides the Convention for Social Security (Minimum standards) of 1952. These two conventions provide migrant workers with certain social security rights and benefits, for those who face the problem of losing entitlements to social security benefits they enjoyed in their country of origin. More recently, the need to establish mechanisms for the portability of social security entitlements and earned benefits was also reiterated in the Global Compact for Migration.

Today, while the ILO will present the findings from the study, we will do so with the purpose of opening the dialogue for us gathered in this room today, to discuss on the gaps and challenges in policy and implementation, enlist solutions for enhanced cooperation and outline the next steps for future engagement on the issue.

I take this opportunity to thank FICCI and the Ernst & Young for their support in drafting the research report. Many of you present here are involved in the implementation of these social security agreements. We look forward to hearing your views, and together with you, we will find ways to make these social security agreements more effective. With these words, I welcome you to this seminar.

Thank you for joining us today.