GENEVA (ILO News) -- The Director-General of the International Labour Organization (ILO) Juan Somavia welcomed the outcome of the London G20 Summit, saying that “The leaders of the G20 have made significant progress in consolidating a coordinated international response to the deepening global crisis".
He added, however, that "The difficulty of achieving this common approach to the serious challenges facing different parts of the world should not be underestimated. The agreements on increased funding for the international financial institutions can help to ensure that all countries, including developing and emerging countries, are able to participate in recovery measures according to their needs and policy requirements."
Mr. Somavia said "The Leaders' commitment to not only restore growth, but to lay the foundations for a fair and sustainable world economy offers a vision of a new path for globalization that is essential to avoid future crises. "
Mr. Somavia also welcomed the emphasis in the Leaders’ Statement on social protection and the creation of employment opportunities saying that the ILO "looks forward to working with other relevant organizations and the UN system to assess the actions taken on these issues and those required for the future, as requested by the Leaders.”
He cited elements of the Statement by the G20 regarding the "human dimension to the crisis" and the commitment "to support those affected by the crisis, by creating employment opportunities and through income support measures. We will build a fair and family-friendly labour market for both women and men. We therefore welcome the reports of the London Jobs Conference and the Rome Social Summit, and the key principles they proposed. We will support employment by stimulating growth, investing in education and training, and through active labour market policies, focusing on the most vulnerable. We call upon the ILO, working with other relevant organizations, to assess the actions taken and those required for the future."
Mr. Somavia said “The ILO has started this work. Our preliminary results based on a survey of 40 countries’ measures are that funding for financial rescues far exceeds that for fiscal measures to stimulate demand, output and employment. Yet credit flows have still not returned to normal. The ILO will work to encourage countries to focus the fiscal stimulus measures more on employment and social protection and to further enhance international coordination in these areas. Policy responses should benefit from increased social dialogue with employers and trade unions."
Further commenting on the ILO's role, he added, "We will develop this work and deepen our collaboration with others, as requested by the G20, as we further elaborate our proposal for a Global Jobs Pact at the International Labour Conference from 3–19 June 2009 in Geneva. This year’s ILO global tripartite conference will focus on the actions needed to confront the employment and social policy challenges of the economic and financial crisis.”
"The G20 London Summit has shown a commitment to an on-going process of assessment and review of the policy responses recognizing that further actions in several areas may be needed," Mr. Somavia said.