GENEVA (ILO News) – The Government of Singapore deposited the instrument of ratification for the Promotional Framework for Occupational Safety and Health Convention, 2006 (No. 187) with the International Labour Office on 11 June 2012. Singapore is the 23rd member State to ratify the Convention.
Minister of State for National Development and Manpower, Mr Tan Chuan-Jin, delivered the instrument to the Director-General Elect of the International Labour Organization (ILO), Mr Guy Ryder.
Mr. Tan Chuan-Jin stated “Since the reform of the Workplace Safety and Health (WSH) framework in 2005, Singapore has made significant progress as a result of regulatory reforms through the enactment of the WSH Act as well as greater industry ownership of WSH outcomes in areas such as industry capability building and standards setting. This has effectively brought down our workplace fatality rate from 4.9 fatalities per 100,000 workers in 2004 to 2.3 fatalities per 100,000 workers in 2011. The ratification of Convention No. 187 will align our efforts closer with international labour standards, and position us to play a bigger role in both the region and beyond for excellence in WSH.”
Mr Ryder welcomed Singapore’s ratification of Convention No. 187, saying “Singapore can now take advantage of an international instrument and a normative system which will guide implementation of its comprehensive WSH Strategy 2018. Singapore joins other member States that have made a formal commitment to apply the Convention, and becomes the fourth country in Asia to do so.”
Ratification of Convention No. 187 complements other actions Singapore has taken to promote OSH issues in Asia, including the signing of the Seoul Declaration on Safety and Health at Work in 2010, and the hosting of the 2006 ASEAN Labour Ministers Meeting, which recognized that OSH policies and programmes should be an important element of ASEAN labour cooperation.
Convention No. 187 calls for ratifying member States to take action to progressively achieve a safe and healthy working environment and commit themselves to continuous improvement of occupational safety and health by means of a national policy, a national system and a national programme aimed at the prevention of occupational injuries, diseases and deaths, through tripartism and social dialogue.
The ILO estimates that 317 million workplace accidents and 2.3 million deaths occur worldwide every year. Singapore’s WSH Strategy 2018 calls for a decrease in the workplace fatality rate to less than 1.8 per 100,000 workers by 2018 in the country.