Bangladesh has been an active member State of the ILO since 22 June 1972 and has ratified 33 ILO Conventions including seven fundamental conventions. The ILO opened its office in Dhaka, Bangladesh on 25 June 1973, and initially started working on expanding income-earning opportunities through labour-based infrastructure development and maintenance. Recent technical cooperation activities have focused on alleviating poverty and creating employment opportunities through technical vocational education and training reform, combating worst forms of child labour, promoting green jobs, improving occupational safety and health standards, and protecting the rights of migrant workers. Since the opening of the office, the ILO together with the Government of Bangladesh, Bangladesh Employers’ Federation (BEF), and the National Coordination Committee for Workers’ Education (NCCWE), has been working towards promoting decent and productive employment opportunities for women and men in Bangladesh. In addition, the ILO cooperates with many other key actors in civil society, academic and research institutions, private sector and media. As part of the UN system in Bangladesh, the ILO supports the Government of Bangladesh in implementing its Poverty Reduction Strategy (PRS) and in achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
Bangladesh Decent Work Country Programme (DWCP), which outlines the framework of ILO cooperation in Bangladesh, was developed and has been implemented for the period of 2006-2009, focusing on four key outcomes:
- Improving skills training and entrepreneurship for enhanced employability and livelihoods;
- Improving coverage of social protection and rights for workers in selected sectors, including for migrants;
- Combating child labour with priority focus on the worst forms of child labour (WFCL);
- Strengthening social dialogue.
The Bangladesh DWCP contributes to the achievement of the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) 2006-2020 especially in the areas of Education and Pro-Poor Growth, Social Protection, and Gender Equality and Advancement of Women.