Statement by Mr. Naci Koru, Ambassador, Permament Representative of Turkey On the GB.332/INS/4 regarding 10th European Regional Meeting (ILO)

Naci KORU 22.03.2018
Thank you Chair for giving me the floor,
1. I would like to thank the Office for the detailed information provided in the document, well reflecting the discussions of the Regional Meeting which was held in Istanbul on 2-5 October 2017.
2. Turkish Government was glad to host this important meeting in Istanbul.
3. There were government representatives from 42 and employers from 32 countries present in the meeting. However, as for workers, only 7 out of 51 countries participated from the region. We would welcome that, more worker participation could be present at the meeting to engage in fruitful and constructive discussions at both plenary sittings and special debates.
4. From its outset, Turkey has spent great efforts to keep open the channels of dialogue at both the national and the international levels to respond the concerns of some workers delegates. I believe that the smooth conduct of the meeting is the pure evidence of its success.
5. Among others, one of the lessons learnt from this meeting is that a country’s sincere effort to work and cooperate closely with ILO and social partners should not be used for political purposes. Otherwise, it might prevent these types of meetings from achieving to their main objectives, weaken their effectiveness and harm the tripartite structure of the Organization.
6. Being the last meeting before marking the Organization’s centenary, European Regional Meeting provided the opportunity for tripartite delegations to discuss the dynamic processes shaping the future of work in the region, including technological developments, globalization and demographic trends. As our region seriously affected from the consequences, large movements of refugees and migrants were also became the subject of deliberations.
7. Moreover, an informal ministerial meeting was held to discuss fair and effective access to labour markets for migrants and refugees where Labour Ministers shared good practices to support integration of migrants. We think that the views and comments on this subject are very important and must orient the ILO and countries of the region to take further steps in this regard.
8. As you know, Turkey is particularly affected by the long lasting conflicts in the region which had provoked the mass influx of refugees fleeing conflict and deprivation which is the largest movements of civilians since the Second World War. On this occasion, we would like to emphasize the importance of genuine international solidarity and cooperation to alleviate the problems of innocent civilians who are affected by the conflicts.
9. As it is indicated in the document, it was agreed by tripartite consensus that social dialogue will continue to be the best way to find adequate and balanced responses to future issues and challenges in the world of work which we fully agree with.
10. The meeting was concluded with the acceptance of “The Istanbul Initiative for the Centenary: Future for Decent Work for strong and responsible social partnership in Europe and Central Asia”. The Istanbul Initiative presents comprehensive policy frameworks to recap the benefits and minimize the risks relating to the future of work.
11. We believe that it is important to take the Initiative into consideration when implementing current programmes and in developing future programme of ILO and related budget proposals.
12. To conclude, Turkish Government thanks all the delegates who participated and contributed to the reach discussion which was very important for the future for
decent work in the region with possible challenges and opportunities. We also thank the Director General for his excellent report which made the rich discussions possible and Regional Director for his relentless efforts for the organization of this meeting. We are also grateful to the ILO staff who contributed to the successful conduct of this meeting in its every aspect.
13. Turkey supports the decision point in the para 213 of the document.
Thank you.


Sadık Arslan Ambassador

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