Informal economy in Nepal

A woman selling vegetables
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In Nepal, more than 70 per cent of the economically active population is involved in the informal economy. Due to changing patterns of employment, the informal economy is rapidly expanding. However, workers in the informal economy face multiple of challenges and constraints because the government is not in a position to regulate it. Consequently, workers are subject to exploitation and deprived of many fundamental rights at work.

Social protection for the workers in the informal economy is one of the emerging issues in Nepal. ILO has commissioned a study on the “Social Protection for People in the Informal Economy of Nepal” with a view to identify the scope of social protection for workers and vulnerable groups in the informal economy and to come up with viable recommendations for social protection measures for workers in the informal economy.

The Government of Nepal, at the request of the ILO, submitted a completed report on the survey designed to collect the views of member States on the scope and content of the proposed instruments for domestic work. ILO organized a national consultative workshop in collaboration with the Ministry of Labour and Transport Management to discuss the developments for domestic workers and to share views and solicit information on domestic work.

ILO has also commissioned a study on “Domestic Work in Nepal: Socio-Economic and Law and Practice on Conditions of Work” which is currently on progress. Under the on-going Labour Market Governance Reform Programme of ILO in Nepal, a new labour law has been drafted. The new labour law will also cover informal sector workers which will address many crucial issues of the workers in the informal economy.