ILO-IPEC's Mekong Sub-regional Project to Combat Trafficking in Children and Women (TICW Phase I) began in 2000 with a three year research, consultation, analysis and intervention phase. Through the work and commitment of its partners and stakeholders in Cambodia, China (Yunnan), Lao PDR, Thailand and Viet Nam, TICW Phase II project is continuing to build on the documented successes of Phase I and contributing to the eradication of labour exploitation of children and women in the Great Mekong Subregion. As part of this effort, TICW Phase II is focusing its interventions on key target groups, namely children (ages 10-14 and 15-17) as well as young women, which run a higher risk of trafficking through the course of migration.
As both a source and destination province, Yunnan is per capita one of China's worst affected areas of trafficking in children and women. Most trafficking takes place internally. That is to say most movement occurs within Yunnan and into other provinces of China. Many of the victims are young women who think they are heading to a new job but are unwittingly 'sold' as brides to men in isolated rural areas or tricked into other exploitative occupations. Trafficking for marriage exists because many of the men in remote areas cannot afford the dowry required of a formal marriage. The trafficker effectively 'provides' a bride for a much lower price.
In Yunnan Province, the Project works in key sending areas (Simao City, Honghe Prefecture, Jiangcheng and Menghai) and key receiving districts of Kunming. It's fully tripartite - governmental, workers' and employers' groups involved. There are more than 15 action programmes developed with partners for the Phase II project.