GUY RYDER: UZBEKISTAN’S DYNAMIC DEVELOPMENT CHARACTERIZED BY BOLD, OPEN POLICY
As we reported earlier, Uzbek delegation headed by Deputy Prime Minister, Chairperson of the Women’s Committee Tanzila Narbayeva took part in the 107th session of the International Labor Conference (ILC) held in Geneva from May 28 to June 8. The group of Uzbek officials also included the Minister of Employment and Labor Relations S.Kudbiev, Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry A.Ikramov, Deputy Chairman of the Federation of Trade Unions of Uzbekistan B.Mahmadaliyev.
All members of the Uzbek delegation made presentations at the general session of the conference. Speakers noted that cardinal reforms are currently in progress across the socio-economic, cultural, humanitarian and political life of Uzbekistan under the leadership of President Shavkat Mirziyoyev. The participants were informed about the essence and substance of the Decent Work Country Programme designed to perfect the national labor legislation, improve the labor market, ensure employment and social protection and maintain constant dialogue with the population.
In addition, the reports provided information on the system of parliamentary and public control over compliance with international labor standards, prevention and elimination of possible risks of using child and forced labor, about the Roadmap for the Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals realized currently in the country.
Particular emphasis was placed on enhanced measures in Uzbekistan to promote social justice through successful social dialogue between the government, trade unions and employers, as well as representatives of civil society institutions.
While attending the 107th session of the ILC, the Uzbek delegation met with the Director General and staff of the International Labor Organization (ILO), the leadership of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and the International Organization of Employers (IOE), officials of several other countries.
During the negotiations ILO Director-General Guy Ryder informed that Uzbekistan's achievements in recent years are highly appreciated and recognized by the organization and the expert community as well as the advanced nations. The ILO head stressed that the current dynamic development of Uzbekistan is characterized by a bold, open policy aimed at addressing pressing problems of the society. This is evidenced by the fact that within a short period of time Uzbekistan and the ILO have made tangible progress on sensitive and complex issues. According to Ryder, the achievements made by Uzbekistan in the field of child and forced labor have become a powerful response to the entire international community.
At the meeting, the ILO Director-General expressed willingness to visit Uzbekistan this December to acquaint personally with the reforms and discuss issues pertinent to furthering the bilateral cooperation. Ryder supported the proposal to participate in an international conference due in Tashkent occasioned to the ILO's 100th anniversary.
The Uzbek delegation also met with the ILO Regional Director for Europe and Central Asia Heinz Koller, Special Adviser to the Director-General of the Organization Kari Tapiola, Director of the International Labor Standards Department Corinne Varga, Coordinator for the Child and Forced Labor Conventions Deepa Rishikesh, Director of Bureau for Workers' Activities Maria Helena Andre.
High-ranking officials of the ILO noted with satisfaction the significant progress in the evolution of cooperation with Uzbekistan, highly appreciated the decisions made over the past two years in the area of improving labor legislation, creating decent working conditions and strengthening social protection. They assessed positively the implementation of labor standards in Uzbekistan in accordance with international requirements, monitoring and joint review of working conditions with the provision of technical expertise by ILO. It was also stressed that reforming the entire complex of social and labor issues in accordance with international norms within a brief span of period deserves high respect and recognition.
During the negotiations between the head of the Uzbek delegation Tanzila Narbayeva and the Director of the UN Women Liaison Office at Geneva Christine Loew the partners were informed about the activities of the Women's Committee of Uzbekistan, the measures being taken in the country to protect the women’s rights, improve their situation in political, socio-economic and cultural spheres. The parties expressed interest in consolidating cooperation, including the implementation of joint programs, engagement of technical and advisory assistance.
The Uzbek officials also held talks with representatives of Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Lithuania. They discussed issues of boosting bilateral cooperation on spheres of shared interest.