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Politics

CPLP ministers urge member states to ratify convention on social security

The labor ministers of the Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries (CPLP) on Tuesday approved a statement urging member states to ratify the organization's 2015 multilateral convention on social security, which remains unenforced.

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The decision is contained in the final declaration of the 14th ordinary meeting of CPLP ministers of Labor and Social Affairs, held under the presidency of Cape Verde, in videoconference format, and in which the ministers discussed the "Covid-19 and the world of work," outlining the current scenario in each of the member states.

In the meeting's final declaration, the ministers urge "the ratification by member states of the CPLP Multilateral Convention on Social Security," as well as the signing of the respective Administrative Agreement of the organization's Multilateral Convention on Social Security.

"This is a project that has been around for some time, but whose ratification is necessary and is required for its applicability, so that countries can take better advantage of this instrument," explained, at the end of the meeting, the minister of Justice and Labor of Cape Verde, Janine Lélis, the country that has the rotating presidency of the CPLP.

At issue is a convention signed at the 20th ordinary meeting of the Council of Ministers of the CPLP, held in Dili, Timor-Leste, on July 24, 2015, and which aims to promote social protection coverage to workers who migrate between member states of the organization, applying to benefits relating to the eventualities of disability, old age and death.

The final statement also recalls the meeting for the negotiation of the Administrative Agreement of the CPLP Multilateral Social Security Convention held in October 2018 in Rio de Janeiro, but the ministers in charge also point out the need to create an Economic and Social Council of the organization, mandating the permanent and executive bodies to carry out a "reflection" to that effect for a deliberation at the next ordinary meeting of the ministers of labor and social affairs.

"Encouraging the Government of Angola, which will receive the presidency of the CPLP in July 2021, in pursuing efforts to increase intersectoral cooperation among member states," reads the final statement.

They also decided to "recommend the strengthening of national strategies and/or national development plans for the reduction of poverty and social inequalities" and "reiterate the commitment to promote social policies, including active employment measures, with a focus on youth employment as well as the extension of universal social protection.

The meeting's final declaration calls for the strengthening of cooperation and political and diplomatic concertation among all member states "for the construction and consolidation of contributory social security systems", as well as the development of "technical cooperation actions regarding the use of databases on social protection systems and actions related to the extension of social protection to rural workers, workers in the informal economy, domestic workers, the self-employed, among others".

The CPLP Action Plan to Combat Child Labor 2021-2025 was also approved, providing for the drafting of a proposal for a joint CPLP declaration to be presented at the fifth Global Conference on the Sustained Eradication of Child Labor, to be held in South Africa in 2022.

"As a way of engaging all countries of the community in the fight against child labor, in line with what is necessary to do, taking into account the goals of sustainable development," stressed the minister of Cape Verde, who chaired the meeting on Tuesday.

The CPLP has nine member states: Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Equatorial Guinea, Mozambique, Portugal, Sao Tome and Principe and East Timor.