Promoting the Right to Freedom of Association and the Right to Collective Bargaining (FOACB)

The Project will contribute to improving labour-relations in Sri Lanka.


Ministry of Justice and Labour Relations, Department of Labour (DOL), Board of Investment in Sri Lanka (BOI), EFC and Trade Unions

Target Beneficiaries:

Employers & their organizations, workers & their organizations, BOI and DOL officials

Regional Focus:

Ready Made Garment Industry in Sri Lanka (within and outside the Free Trade Zones)


Improved respect for freedom of association and collective bargaining rights in law and practice in target countries and sectors (ready-made garments – Sri Lanka)

Main Activities:

  • Supporting Labour Law reform.
  • Conduct a study on progress made and persistent challenges on FOACB rights in the RMG sector.
  • Support the development of a policy on collective bargaining in the RMG sector and submission to cabinet for approval.
  • Support the creation of a mediation unit within MOJLR to improve prevention and resolution of labour disputes.
  • Implement a practical training and in-factory counselling programme to improve industrial harmony and implementation of labour laws (short version of the ILO SCORE programme).
  • Carry out training for trade unions on how to implement FOACB in practice including education on national labour laws and ILS.
  • Provide technical support to the constituents for the collection of sex disaggregated data on violations of trade unions’ civil liberties.
  • Provide advisory services to tripartite constituents for the adoption of an action plan to promote FOACB and organize workers in the RMG sector.

Project Outcomes:

  • Draft national legislation is more in conformity with ILO Conventions No. 87 and No. 98.
  • Policies that create an enabling environment and promote the effective implementation of freedom of association and collective bargaining rights are discussed by the tripartite constituents.
  • Tripartite constituents are better informed and equipped to promote and exercise their rights and obligations in relation to freedom of association and collective bargaining.