The Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) office at the Embassy of Sweden in Bangkok and the International Labour Organisation (ILO) recently signed a co-operation agreement to start a project in January next year to promote decent work, gender equality and environmental sustainability in the garment sector supply chains in Asia. The project, called ‘Decent Work in the Garment Sector Supply Chains in Asia,’ will focus on the garment supply chains in Asia, notably South-Asia, South-East Asia and China, which plays a very significant role in the international division of garment production, according to a report from ILO.

The project aims to contribute to improved working conditions and rights of workers as well as improved productivity and environmental sustainability of the garment sector in Asia. With the support of governments, workers’ and employers’ organizations and other private sector organizations, the project will strengthen knowledge of research findings, good practices and tools in four main areas—social dialogue and industrial relations systems; advancement of gender equality; enhanced productivity and competitiveness; and reduced environmental impact.

Secondly, by strengthening coordination among the many stakeholders already actively working to ensure decent work in the garment industry in Asia, the project will contribute to better knowledge-sharing and synergies of action.

The project is funded by the Regional Development Cooperation Section of the Embassy of Sweden in Bangkok. It will be managed by the ILO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific in close collaboration with ILO Country Offices and with the technical support of ILO’s two decent work technical teams in Bangkok and Delhi as well as multiple specialist departments at ILO headquarters.