First Ever Peer Review on child labour in the Commonwealth of independent States to start in Kyrgyzstan

The number of children involved in child labour in Kyrgyzstan fell from 32.9 per cent in 2007 to 27.8 per cent in 2014.

News | 11 November 2016
A child labour monitor at a local market in Kyrgyzstan
ILO NEWS – With ILO support, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan will begin the first voluntary peer reviews on child labour in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). During joint meetings in November, the countries will assess one another’s policies in this area, share good practices and formulate recommendations.

In addition to peer learning, the review is expected to improve policy and institutional reform, identify capacity-building needs for governments and social partners, promote the exchange of knowledge, and facilitate mobilization of resources for addressing child labour based on recommendations made by peers from other countries.

The peer review will be undertaken in the framework of the “Elimination of child labour in Central Asia” project, which has been operational in both countries since 2005, and is funded by the German government.

Kyrgyzstan will be the first country to host peers from Tajikistan and Turkey. The Kyrgyz Government has actively worked to mainstream child labour concerns into a policy development framework and apply a system approach in this area. The government’s efforts are aimed at developing and strengthening a comprehensive child protection system, thus laying the foundation for a comprehensive, integrated response to child labour issues. The Interagency Action Plans on Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labour for 2016-2018 was adopted on April 6, 2016. According to the Second National Child Labour Survey, there was a sustainable downward trend in the number of children involved in child labour: from 32.9 per cent in 2007 to 27.8 per cent in 2014.

The peer review will consist of three phases:  preparations, consultations and assessment. The three-day exercise will start on November 24 in Bishkek with the participation of tripartite partners from Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Turkey. After a detailed discussion with the Kyrgyz authorities, social partners and other stakeholders, the peers will undertake site visits to pilot areas. Then the review teams will prepare draft reports, including conclusions and recommendations, which will be shared with the Kyrgyz government for factual comments and corrections. The reports are expected to be finalized in early 2017.

On 1-3 December, the peer review will move to Tajikistan. The main areas to be reviewed are the implementation of the National Action Programme to Eliminate the Worst Forms of Child Labour for 2015-2020, the national Child Labour Monitoring System and youth employment.

“We are very expectant concerning the upcoming peer review on child labour issues. Now when child labour concerns are reflected in national policy development and are considered in a systemic manner, the peer review will help us to bring the country up to a new level in addressing child labour. We are thankful to the ILO for its support in undertaking this review in our region,” said Jyldyz Polotova, Deputy Minister of Labour and Social Development of the Kyrgyz Republic.

“We have worked with the partners from Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Turkey  for several years already and are pleased to note significant progress made by the three countries in addressing child labour concerns at the national level,” said  Snezhi Bedalli, Senior Desk Officer for Europe, Central Asia and Arab States, Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work Branch , ILO Geneva. ”The current peer review exercise is the next relevant step in this important process. And we are extremely grateful to the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany for its continuous support to ILO projects in Central Asia.”