The Arab region must respond to an acute crisis of unemployment because failure to provide decent work opportunities is a potent threat to the stability of our societies. Yes, this is a global crisis, but it is most sharply felt in your countries, and especially by young people."ILO Director-General Guy Ryder at the opening of the 42nd session of the Arab Labour Conference, 19 April 2015.
- Considering the challenges women of all ages face in the Middle East and Northern African (MENA) labour market, a new report entitled “Women in Business and Management: Gaining Momentum in the Middle East and North Africa” was prepared by the ILO in 2015, which aims to inspire discussions in the region about women and business and motivate world of work actors to pursue equality.
- An ILO-convened interregional policy dialogue on labour flows for the Arab States and Asia and the Pacific, led to a common strategy for a fair migration agenda between the two regions.
- In Lebanon a new trade union has been created to represent domestic workers only, and an ILO-funded hotline – which allows migrant domestic workers to report cases of mistreatment or abuse, and receive help and counselling – was launched recently by Lebanon’s Ministry of Labour.
- In 2014–15 the ILO assisted Iraq, Jordan, the occupied Palestinian territory, Oman and Saudi Arabia to develop policies that will improve social security coverage of excluded groups in particular.
- The occupied Palestinian territory‘s recently adopted first social security act covering private sector workers and their families will provide coverage to 82,646 workers in 2016, with the aim of reaching 336,440 by 2030.
- An interregional dialogue on the labour market impact of the Syrian refugee crisis in host communities, convened by the ILO in 2015, strengthened tripartite coordination between Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey.