Facilitating transitions from the informal to the formal economy

The informal economy is significantly impacting the world of work, with as much as 40–80 per cent of the labour force in developing countries working within it. Increasingly, transition to formality has emerged as a priority policy agenda in developed and developing countries, and new policy initiatives and approaches are taken in different regions that facilitate this transition through multiple pathways.

At its 317th Session (March 2013) the Governing Body decided to place a standard-setting item on the agenda of the 103rd Session (June 2014) of the Conference on facilitating transitions from the informal to the formal economy, under the double discussion procedure, which means that this item will be dealt with at the current session and at the 104th Session of the Conference (2015).

This standard-setting item builds on the conclusions concerning decent work and the informal economy, adopted by the Conference in 2002, the outcome of the ILO Tripartite Interregional Symposium on the Informal Economy (2007) and the 2012 Conference conclusions concerning the recurrent discussion on fundamental principles and rights at work, which called for the convening of a meeting of experts on advancing fundamental principles and rights at work in the informal economy.

Reports to the Conference

  1. Report V(1)

    Transitioning from the informal to the formal economy

    23 July 2013

    Provides an overview of the informal economy, its impact on the attainment of decent work for all workers and employers and the ILO’s approach to the transition to formality, as set out in the 2002 conclusions.

  2. Report V(2)

    Transitioning from the informal to the formal economy

    28 April 2014

Background information

  1. ILC concludes with praise for Forced Labour Protocol

    12 June 2014

    The annual International Labour Conference has ended Thursday. In his closing remarks Director General Guy Ryder pointed to the successful adoption of the forced labour protocol as a notable achievement.

  2. © ILO 2016

    Ryder: We’ve endorsed an “agenda that really matters”

    12 June 2014

    World parliament of labour offers hope to millions of victims of forced labour, discusses migration, ways out of informality and overcoming mass unemployment.

  3. ILO moves the discussion on the informal economy one step forward

    12 June 2014

    The International Labour Conference completed a first overview of a reality that impacts 40 per cent of the global workforce.