ILO-UNDP joint statement for a human-centred recovery from COVID-19

ILO-UNDP joint statement for a human-centred recovery from COVID-19 and accelerated action on jobs, informality and social protection.

February 23, 2022

Inequalities between countries and within societies are growing, exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and an uneven recovery from the crisis. An unprecedented number of jobs and livelihoods were lost, causing heightened income insecurity around the world, particularly for the more than four billion people without any access to social protection and for people working in the informal economy. While governments responded with a wide range of emergency measures, these have not been sufficient to rebuild trust and to reverse the widening gap of incomes within societies. 

The call for social justice and the urgent need to repair the frayed social contract is enshrined in the UN Secretary-General’s Our Common Agenda. It entails concrete recommendations to increase the level of financing dedicated to social protection, to develop a common roadmap to integrate informal workers and enterprises into the formal economy, and to increase investments for job creation in the green, care and digital economies. The Global Accelerator on Jobs and Social Protection for Just Transitions (henceforth Global Accelerator), launched by the UN Secretary-General, provides an important platform to implement these recommendations, with the ambition to create at least 400 million jobs, primarily in the green, digital and care economies, and to extend social protection floors to four billion people by 2030.  
This is a huge undertaking which will require implementing the new networked multilateralism and bringing to bear synergies across the UN Development System and beyond. Against this backdrop, ILO and UNDP make the following commitments to tackle this challenge:

1.    ILO and UNDP commit to collaborate to develop a common roadmap for the Global Accelerator, with a particular focus on informality, in partnership with other UN entities and in close consultation with member States, social partners and other stakeholders.

2.    ILO and UNDP commit to launch a Joint Global Initiative on Fostering Pathways to Formality. The Initiative will develop innovative joint policies and operational approaches towards expanding social protection for informal workers and enhancing the productivity and resilience of workers and economic units of the informal sector to facilitate their gradual transition to the formal economy, underpinned by the ILO Transition to the Formal Economy Recommendation, 2015 (No 204). 

3.    ILO and UNDP commit to work jointly in a select number of pathfinder countries, building on the on-going joint initiatives in the field, to support the implementation of the initiative at national levels. 
We reiterate our commitment expressed in our Joint Framework of Action of 16 September 2020 that ILO and UNDP have a responsibility to take unprecedented action together to accelerate solutions on the ground, with the Sustainable Development Goals as our compass.
We invite other partners to join us in this endeavour.

We need to massively invest in digital and financial literacy while closing the gender digital divide. 2.9 billion women, mostly in developing countries, have no access to the internet.

Haoliang Xu, UN Assistant Secretary General and Director of UNDP's Bureau for Policy and Programme Support.