International Labour Organisation
The Minister of Social Affairs and Employment is responsible for the issues dealt with by the International Labour Organization (ILO) in Geneva, Switzerland. The ILO formulates international labour standards in the form of Conventions and Recommendations setting minimum standards of basic labour rights.
The Netherlands has ratified 105 ILO Conventions, making it a leader among the ratifying nations. The ILO has a unique tripartite structure with workers and employers participating as equal partners with governments in the work of its governing organs.
To ensure the promotion of decent work for all, the ILO has formulated the following strategic objectives (the Decent Work Agenda):
- Promote and realize standards and fundamental principles and rights at work (see below);
- Create greater opportunities for women and men to secure decent employment and income;
- Enhance the coverage and effectiveness of social protection for all;
- Strengthen tripartism and social dialogue.
Fundamental labour standards
The promotion of compliance with fundamental labour standards is a topic of debate in numerous international forums, particularly when it is relevant to international trade issues. It has been debated by the ILO, the EU, the World Trade Organisation (WTO), the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the United Nations.