Release type: Media Release


Australian Government funding for ILO initiatives in the Asia Pacific


The Hon Julia Gillard MP
Minister for Education. Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations
Minister for Social Inclusion
Deputy Prime Minister

The Australian Government announced today it will provide $15 million over two years under a partnership arrangement with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) to support sustainable employment initiatives in South-east Asia and the Pacific. This partnership signals a closer relationship between Australia and the ILO which is timely given the continuing global recession and its significant impact on unemployment in many countries in the Asia-Pacific region.

Speaking at the ILO’s annual Conference, the Australian Government delegation announced that a five-year framework agreement will be developed to support the new partnership.

The agreement will cover funding and cooperation for existing and new initiatives in our region.

The agreement has the full support of worker and employer group partners – the Australian Council of Trade Unions, Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Australian Industry Group.

Celebrating its 90th Anniversary this year, the ILO has played a central role in creating international standards for working conditions and providing assistance to countries in the fields of employment, training and social inclusion.

As a key United Nations (UN) Agency, the ILO has long been recognised as a global leader in this field. The ILO was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1969 in recognition of the excellence of its work.

The ILO is also playing a key role in helping developing countries achieve the UN’s Millennium Development Goal 1 which establishes targets to eradicate extreme poverty.

The Australian Government is looking forward to working closely with the ILO in creating new initiatives to strengthen regional approaches to sustainable employment and development.