On 5 March 2020, Lithuania ratified the ILO Protocol on Forced Labour, and became the 45th country worldwide and the 18th in Europe to ratify the Protocol, pledging to eradicate forced labour.
The Protocol requires countries to adopt effective measures to prevent forced labour, as well as the victims, and ensure their access to effective remedies, including compensation.
Forced labour includes sexual exploitation, debt bondage and trafficking in persons. According to ILO global estimates, there are about 24.9 million victims of forced labour worldwide, of whom 4.8 million are victims of sexual exploitation.
In the private sector, forced labour generates USD 150 billion in illegal profits every year. Several economic sectors are affected, including domestic work, construction, manufacturing, agriculture and fishing.
Lithuania has ratified all the fundamental ILO Conventions, including the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29). The centenary of the ILO was a good opportunity for us to speed up the ratification of the Forced Labour Protocol that supplements this important Convention, as Lithuania has committed to the consistent fight against forced labour and human trafficking
commented H.E. Ambassador Andrius Krivas, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Lithuania to the UN Office and Other International Organizations in Geneva.
Lithuania has made significant efforts to tackle trafficking in persons, as illustrated by the adoption of an Action Plan against Trafficking in Human Beings for the period of 2017-19, providing for measures of monitoring, prevention, prosecution and victim protection, with a focus on the cooperation between stakeholders at different levels.
What is more, the high-level Commission for Coordination of the Fight against Trafficking in Human Beings was established in 2016 to coordinate the efforts of all actors and to ensure the effective implementation of the planned activities and actions.
This ratification is all the more important since the ILO’s global estimates show the urgency of adopting immediate and effective measures to eradicate forced labour and trafficking. By ratifying the Protocol, Lithuania is moving ahead towards the achievement of decent work and the delivering at the country-level of the 2030 UN Sustainable Development Goals, in particular SDG target 8.7
added ILO Director General, Guy Ryder.
Leave a Reply