ILO leads MENA leadership programme to promote a just transition to a green future of work

Worker, employer and government representatives from the region met online to gain a better understanding gained a better understanding of how to shape policies to implement climate change commitments.

Press release | 20 January 2023

BEIRUT (ILO News) - The International Labour Organization (ILO) in cooperation with its International Training Centre (ITCILO) and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) convened the MENA Leadership Programme on the Just Transition, to discuss the latest research, knowledge and insights and to share best practices in shaping a just transition to a green future of work.

The programme aimed to strengthen the capacities of representatives from government workers and employer’s organisations in the MENA region to effectively engage in the follow-up discussions and implementation of the outcomes of the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) and in shaping the discussions ahead of COP28.

Participants from Algeria, Bahrain, Jordan, Iraq, Kuwait, Lebanon, Occupied Palestinian Territory, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Syrian Arab Republic, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen gained a better understanding on how to reflect aspects around labour market impacts and social justice in the process of shaping a comprehensive set of policies to successfully implement climate change commitments.

Many of the countries in the MENA region are among those most vulnerable to climate change. Rising temperatures, water stress, and natural disasters pose a direct threat to the resources and livelihoods that their economies and societies depend on.

“Working to address climate change by shifting to a low-carbon future is a clear priority for the MENA region,” said ILO Deputy Regional Director for Arab States Peter Rademaker, who participated in the online programme. “Despite the fact that such a transition will entail profound changes to the region’s economies and societies, it will, in the long-run, generate gains in employment, social development and economic growth through investing in future-oriented industries, technologies and jobs.”

Rademaker added that the ILO is committed to supporting a just transition to a sustainable future takes and the development of policies that will mitigate the negative impacts of the shift on the labour market.
The ILO Governing Body adopted the Guidelines for a just transition towards environmentally sustainable economies and societies for all in 2015. The Guidelines aim to enable governments, workers and employers to leverage the process of structural change towards a greener, low-carbon economy, create decent jobs on a large scale and promote social protection.