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Source: International Labour Organization –

GENEVA (ILO News) – ILO Director-General Guy Ryder has welcomed the commitment by G20 leaders to use all available policy tools to safeguard people’s lives, jobs and incomes, and support the global economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Together with the health emergency we confront an employment crisis of unprecedented proportions,” he stated, in his remarks to G20 leaders on the first day of their Summit in Saudi Arabia.

Ryder commended the fiscal stimulus that underpinned the significant social protection measures taken by G20 countries to protect jobs and livelihoods during the pandemic.

Citing ILO estimates, the Summit Declaration stated that the temporary extension of social protection measures during the crisis have supported the livelihoods of nearly 645 million people.

“It is vital now that such measures remain in place and at scale, averting a massive surge in unemployment and minimizing the long-term damage of economic inactivity by maintaining people’s attachment to the labour market,” Ryder said.

He pointed to the need to extend social protection to workers in the informal economy, who have suffered greatly during a crisis that has exposed deep-rooted structural inequality.

“Poorer countries have lacked adequate resources, and their fiscal stimulus packages have only minimally compensated for the hit to employment. Financial support from the G20 to fill this stimulus gap would make a crucial difference to fighting the crisis, and truly demonstrate the value of international cooperation and solidarity,” he said.

Ryder highlighted the importance given by G20 leaders to social protection, social dialogue and decent jobs – particularly for women and youth – in the final Declaration.

With the pandemic reversing some of the recent gains on gender equality, Ryder welcomed the commitment in the Declaration to step up efforts to close the gender pay gap, address the unequal distribution between men and women of unpaid work and care responsibilities, and to increase women’s labour force participation. However, he noted that more needs to be done to achieve the G20 Brisbane goal of reducing the labour participation gender gap by 25 per cent by the year 2025.

Given the gravity of this situation, the global economy needs investments in a human-centred recovery, which strengthens the capacities of people to benefit from change, reinforces the institutions of work so that everyone is properly protected and boosts the jobs of the future – with decent work for all.”

Guy Ryder, ILO Director-General

According to ILO estimates, the equivalent of 345 million full-time jobs were lost globally in the third quarter of 2020 due to the pandemic. The equivalent of as many as 225 million full-time jobs were lost in G20 countries alone in the third quarter of 2020. Many of those hardest hit were young people.

Ryder, therefore, welcomed the endorsement by G20 leaders of the G20 Youth Roadmap 2025. This supports the 2025 goal of reducing by 15 per cent the number of young people who are most at risk of being permanently excluded from the labour market.

“Given the gravity of this situation, the global economy needs investments in a human-centred recovery, which strengthens the capacities of people to benefit from change, reinforces the institutions of work so that everyone is properly protected and boosts the jobs of the future – with decent work for all,” declared Ryder.

MIL OSI NGO