World Bank, ILO launch global partnership for universal social protection

Media advisory | 19 September 2016
NEW YORK (ILO News) – At this year's UN General Assembly, world leaders will launch an unprecedented effort to roll out universal social protection in countries all around the world. Heads of state, the World Bank Group and International Labour Organization will convene on Wednesday 21 September to inaugurate the Global Partnership for Universal Social Protection, which aims to make pensions, maternity, disability and child benefits, among others, available to all persons, closing the gap for hundreds of millions currently unprotected worldwide.

A series of 23 case studies will be released at the event that document how many countries have achieved universality, such as Argentina, Azerbaijan, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Cabo Verde, China, Georgia, Kosovo, Lesotho, the Maldives, Mongolia, Namibia, Nepal, South Africa, Tanzania (Zanzibar), Thailand, Timor-Leste, Trinidad and Tobago and Ukraine, all of which have gone from limited coverage to extend social protection guarantees to all.

This showcases evidence that universal social protection is feasible in developing countries. The Partnership will seek to capitalize on this knowledge and extend similar protections to uncovered populations as part of its efforts to implement the UN's Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agenda.

Wednesday's announcement comes as nations prepare to adopt a reporting framework during this year's General Assembly to track the progress toward achieving the SDGs. Universal social protection features prominently among the goals, which call for the swift implementation of "national social protection systems and measures for all, including floors."