Nepal has proposed to hold next regional labour meet in Kathmandu.

During the second day of South Asia Labour Conference in Lahore today, joint secretary at the Ministry of Labour Dhan Bahadur Shrestha offered to host the conference in Nepal next year.

He also suggested establishment of a SAARC visa centre that will allow workers to shift and work in other SAARC countries.

The meeting of the eight South Asian countries also saw the seven working groups, consisting of SAARC delegates, trade union and civil society figures present their recommendations on labour policy in the region.

The participants discussed on harmonisation of labour laws, working condition, productivity and competitiveness, labour market information for evidence-based policies and laws, labour migration, occupational safety and health, social protection, and protection of vulnerable workers presented their recommendations in the presence of SAARC officials, Labour and Human Resource Department, International Labour Organisation (ILO) and European Union (EU).

They suggested a thorough legal comparative analysis of labour legislation in select areas with focus on effective harmonisation, best practices and implementation, bringing ratification level of ILO conventions at par with enforcement, simplification, consolidation and rationalisation of labour laws, and harmonisation of labour laws with international labour standards.

Likwise, they also presented the recommendations of the working group on working conditions, productivity and competitiveness which included improved compliance, effectiveness and implementation of labour laws through consensus, strengthening capacity and effectiveness of labour inspection, tripartite dialogue and representation of industry and workers to develop effective solutions, skill development for employers and workers, and regional approaches to strengthen aid and donor engagement.

Ministers and officials from the SAARC countries also shared their observations during the meeting.

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