Brief History 4

IV. The Period of Financial Crisis at the ILO (1977-1980)

ILO Director-General: Mr. Francis Blanchard (1974-1989)

In January 1978, Mr. Seiji KUDO, a former delegate of the Japanese government to the International Labour Conference, succeeded Mr. EBITSUKA as Director of the ILO Tokyo Branch Office (1978-1979). In March of the same year, in order to break through the crisis at the ILO, which resulted from America’s withdrawal from the organization in November 1977, Mr. Jane, Deputy Director-General of the ILO, visited Japan to request financial cooperation from it. In response to this request, the Japanese government decided to offer a voluntary contribution in the amount of one million dollars in April. In December 1979, Mr. Francis Blanchard, ILO Director-General, visited Japan as an official guest of the Japanese government.

In January 1980, Mr. Ikumi KUNOGI, a former Government member of the Governing Body, succeeded Mr. KUDO as Director of the ILO Tokyo Branch Office (1980-1985). In February of the same year, the United States rejoined the ILO, and during the 66th Session of the International Labour Conference in June, the Japanese language started to be included in simultaneous interpretation services for the first time. In November 1979, the Asian and Pacific Skill Development Programme (later abbreviated as APSDEP after the Pacific region was added to its target area), co-funded by Japan and the ILO, was launched as a seminar-type technical cooperation project with the regional networking of information on vocational training as its central activity, and in October 1980, its first seminar was held in Japan. Subsequently, APSDEP developed into the Skills and Employability Programme in Asia and the Pacific (SKILLS-AP), and several SKILLS-AP seminars are held in various countries of the region, including Japan, several times a year, with field visits for training organized during each seminar.



1st Technical Consultation Meeting on APSDEP Information Network held in Japan in December 1986