ESS Paper Series No. 2

Labour markets and social security coverage. The Latin American experience.

Since coverage for social security in Latin America has typically been closely linked to formal sector employment, it has excluded the self-employed and those employed in irregular and temporary work. This paper looks at the extent to which social security reforms have been able to encourage and sustain a higher and wider level of coverage and takes the view that in this regard, little has been changed by the reforms. The paper concludes that the expansion of coverage is governed by the structure of the labour market and by the scope for redistribution based on the social and political characteristics of the state.