1. Integrated Strategy on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work 2017-2023

    The Integrated Strategy was developed by FUNDAMENTALS on the basis of several recent resolutions and declarations underlining strong international commitment to tackle violations of fundamental principles and rights at work; and following endorsement of the integrated strategy and action plan on fundamental principles and rights at work by the ILO Governing Body in 2016 and 2017. It explains the theory of change for development cooperation on fundamental principles and rights at work, milestones and expected results and shares some recent success stories.

  2. The teeth of the ILO - The impact of the 1998 ILO Declaration on Fundamentals Principles and Rights at Work

    by Kari Tapiola

    This book explains how the ILO faced the challenges of globalization to social and labour rights when the end of the Cold War and new information technology changed the practice of international economic relations and trade. It traces the reaction to the continued use of child and forced labour, discrimination and denial of trade union rights. The result was the 1998 Declaration of the ILO on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work. The ratification of the ILO Conventions on these rights has reached record levels.

  3. ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work and its Follow-up

    adopted by the International Labour Conference at its Eighty-sixth Session, Geneva, 18 June 1998 (Annex revised 15 June 2010)

  1. 2017 Annual Review - Compilation of baseline tables, by country

    (based on the reports of Member States that have not ratified all fundamental Conventions and/or that have not ratified the Protocol of 2014 to the Forced Labour Convention, 1930)

ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work

Adopted in 1998, the Declaration commits Member States to respect and promote principles and rights in four categories, whether or not they have ratified the relevant Conventions.

These categories are: freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining, the elimination of forced or compulsory labour, the abolition of child labour and the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation.


The ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work, adopted in 1998, makes it clear that these rights are universal, and that they apply to all people in all States - regardless of the level of economic development. It particularly mentions groups with special needs, including the unemployed and migrant workers. It recognizes that economic growth alone is not enough to ensure equity, social progress and to eradicate poverty.

This commitment is supported by a Follow-up procedure. Member States that have not ratified one or more of the core Conventions are asked each year to report on the status of the relevant rights and principles within their borders, noting impediments to ratification, and areas where assistance may be required. These reports are reviewed by the Committee of Independent Expert Advisers. In turn, their observations are considered by the ILO's Governing Body.

Learn more: Official textBackground and History.

Follow up of the Declaration

The Declaration and its Follow-up provides three ways to help countries, employers and workers achieve the full realization of the Declaration’s objective:

  1. Annual Review Reports composed of reports from countries that have not yet ratified one or more of the ILO Conventions that directly relate to the specific principles and rights stated in the Declaration. This reporting process provides Governments with an opportunity to state what measures they have taken towards achieving respect for the Declaration. It also gives organizations of employers and workers a chance to voice their views on progress made and actions taken.
  2. Global Reports which provides a dynamic global picture of the current situation of the principles and rights expressed in the Declaration. The Global Report is an objective view of the global and regional trends on the issues relevant to the Declaration and serves to highlight those areas that require greater attention. It serves as a basis for determining priorities for technical cooperation.
  3. Technical Cooperation Projects, the third way to give effect to the Declaration, are designed to address identifiable needs in relation to the Declaration and to strengthen local capacities thereby translating principles into practice.