ILO Partnerships

Members of g7+ discuss creating jobs for peace through Fragile-to-Fragile Cooperation

ILO and Konrad Adenauer Stiftung in Brussels meeting on Fragile-to-Fragile Cooperation between countries moving into sustainable development

Press release | 09 April 2015
BRUSSELS (ILO News) – Countries of the g7+ met in Brussels on 30-31 March to discuss best practices to foster “jobs for peace”. Organized by the g7+ Secretariat, the International Labour Organization (ILO), and the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS), the event on Fragile-to-Fragile Cooperation considered new policies to create employment, especially for young people, and encourage stability.

The g7+ is a voluntary association of countries that are or have been affected by conflict and are moving into to the next stage of development.

Representatives discussed evidence-based policies and innovative forms of intervention for fragile states in transition.

Countries in a situation of fragility experience similar situations and face comparable challenges. As they develop solutions to cope with difficulties, the potential for Fragile to Fragile Cooperation (F2F) between countries increases. The objectives of the meeting were -
  • to gather the most relevant experience from among the g7+ and non-g7+ least developed countries to produce evidence-based policy options for development in fragile and conflict-affected States (FCS)
  • to share relevant experience between countries in transition and FCS with a view to moving towards resilience
  • to enhance cooperation between countries in a situation of fragility, through Fragile-to-Fragile cooperation
  • to engage international development partners in lessons learned as they develop policies.
The g7+ was formalized at the first Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) International Dialogue on Peacebuilding and Statebuilding (IDPS), held in Dili, Timor-Leste in April 2010. It is composed of 20 Member States, including Afghanistan, Burundi, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Haiti, Liberia, Papua New Guinea, São Tomé and Príncipe, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Solomon Islands, South Sudan, Timor-Leste, Togo and Yemen.

The core mission of the g7+ is to promote peacebuilding and statebuilding as the foundation for transition from conflict to the next stage of sustainable development. This is achieved through a process of country-owned and country-led dialogue and planning.

Employment builds peace

Employment generation is a critical factor in maintaining peace, particularly in the early stages of post-conflict reconstruction, when young people need useful alternative work.

In March 2014 a high-level meeting on decent work in fragile states was held in conjunction with the ILO Governing Body, during which ILO Director-General Guy Ryder signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Helder da Costa, Secretary General of the g7+.

The Memorandum mentions the importance of fragile-to-fragile cooperation to build a partnership in key areas of the ILO’s mandate such as job creation, skills development, social protection and the promotion of South-South and triangular cooperation.

This partnership will guide country-led planning, which will ultimately be defined by the unique context and challenges prevailing in each country.

For many years the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung has conducted projects in fragile States aimed at stabilizing post-conflict situations through political dialogue with stakeholders and support for inter-ethnic and inter-religious reconciliation efforts.

KAS initiatives are implemented with local partners and focus on country-owned and locally driven approaches.

The KAS Office in Brussels in 2014 organized a conference on fragile States providing a critical assessment of international development cooperation in the context of the "New Deal," which discusses the basis of a common approach that aims to support solutions for overcoming violence, conflict and fragility.

Outcome

The meeting adopted a set of recommendations, which include the following:

5. Job creation in fragile countries requires an approach that takes account of fragility. We must:
a) Develop strategies that are tailor–made to the country context and that consolidate peace
b) Focus on groups that have potential to drive conflict: young people, marginalised groups, ex-combatants and IDPs.
c) Give women equal opportunities to participate in the labour market.
d) Address underemployment, in addition to unemployment.
e) Focus on decent work both in the informal and formal sector.
f) Build better labour market data to support better decision making.

6. In the short term, government and development partners are often the main job–generators. Government and Development Partners must therefore:
a) Give priority to labour intensive programmes, public works and infrastructure development
b) Target strategic sectors and activities, to meet urgent and basic needs
c) Support microenterprises and SMEs, including through access to finance
d) Support vocational skills, and the training of trainers, to meet immediate/urgent demands
e) Ensure aid expenditure creates local jobs and builds local markets
f) Take advantage of outward migration (skills, remittances, skilled diaspora etc.).

Contacts

Anita Amorim
Head, Emerging and Special Partnerships Unit (ESPU)
Department of Partnerships and Field Support (PARDEV)
International Labour Organization (ILO)
Tel: +41 79 593 1355
amorim@ilo.org
Audrey Le Guével
Programme and Operations Officer
ILO Office for the European Union and the Benelux countries
leguevel@ilo.org
Dr. Susanne Conrad
Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung
European Office, Brussels
Avenue de l'Yser 11
1040 Brussels - Belgium
Tel.: +32 2 743 24 52
susanne.conrad@kas.de