BRICS and South-South and Triangular Cooperation


BRICS countries are key stakeholders for ILO and ITCILO. BRICS GDP accounts for 28% of global economic output are a major destination and source of FDI, and their MNE exert strong leverage over labour practices in selected global production systems (2008 Declaration on Social Justice for a fair Globalization).

BRICS countries perceives to be a distinct customer segment. The group has a strong self-perception of not belonging to the traditional Western block of developed countries, while the broader group of middle-income and developing countries likewise perceive them not to be one of their own.

BRICS countries require tailored capacity building support services responding their local contexts, and complementing their local expertise (a view echoed in the recent ILO field operations review that calls for a reclassification of member countries in line with their specific needs). These countries do not fit the mainstream development paradigm and the capacity of local ILO constituents and other stakeholders is often highly advanced.

BRICS countries constitute training service markets that require more market-oriented funding mechanisms. Local ILO constituents and stakeholders are highly price-sensitive due to strong competition among local and international service providers. Funding from traditional multi-bilateral partners is diminishing thus challenging the traditional ITCIILO business model. Alternative finances are self-paying customers, co-funding from non-traditional development partners, or a combination of these two sources of finance.


The ITCILO outreach strategy in BRICS is guided by the higher-level partnership development approach adopted by the ILO. Mindful of the need to explore market-oriented funding mechanisms for ITCILO capacity building support in BRICS countries, the recent ILO guidelines on the engagement with non-traditional development partners and on the facilitation of non-traditional collaboration mechanisms are particularly relevant; Governing Body papers released in March 2014 refer to:

The strategy paper for wider ILO engagement with the private sector (GB.320/INS/51

The analysis of public private partnerships between ILO and private sector partners (GB.320/INS/5/2).

The paper on South-South and Triangular cooperation (GB.313/POL/7).

At the 332nd Session of the ILO Governing Body, March 2018 an update and reporting in a document “ILO South–South and triangular cooperation and decent work: Recent developments and future steps” are presented*.

*This document reports on the implementation of the ILO South–South and triangular cooperation (SSTC) strategy adopted by the Governing Body in March 2012, and proposes future SSTC steps, with a view to informing the forthcoming general discussion on effective development cooperation in support of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the 107th Session (2018) of the International Labour Conference. The decision requests the Office to take into account the initial guidance provided in the current Governing Body discussion on SSTC, as well as the recommendations for future steps, in the forthcoming general discussion on effective development cooperation in support of the SDGs at the 107th Session (2018) of the International Labour Conference (see draft decision in paragraph 23).

South-South and Triangular Cooperation

The South-South and Triangular cooperation are funding mechanism and development tool increasingly used to achieve the ILO Decent Work Agenda that has become a global goal and a universal commitment.

The time has come to understand development cooperation as more than a mere portfolio of projects funded by voluntary contributions and transfers to developing countries. It is now part of a broader international effort aligned with the 2

030 Sustainable Development Goals, in which the ITC ILO help to promote the ILO Decent Work Agenda through institutional capacity development.

The South-South development cooperation has been extensively promoted and applied by the fast growing economies of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) which are forming a leading position and thus representing a pivotal new model of cooperation between countries from the South.

If you want to know more about South-South and Triangular Cooperation click on:

The United Nations Office for South-South Cooperation (UNOSSC): https://www.unsouthsouth.org/

UNDP South-South Cooperation: http://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/development-impact/south-south-cooperation.html

ILO South-South and Triangular Cooperation: https://www.ilo.org/pardev/south-south/lang--en/index.htm

South-South Meeting Point: http://www.southsouthpoint.net/


graphic_01.jpg Regional, Sub-regional, Inter-regional Cooperation UN Definition of SSC South-South cooperation principles South-South Cooperation significance Triangular cooperation




BRICS Expert Forum on Youth Employment (ITCILO, 28-30 November 2018)


GLOBAL SOUTH-SOUTH DEVELOPMENT EXPO 2018 (New York, 28-30 November 2018)


Project on "The Future of Work in Asia: Skills development strategies and social protection policies to promote employment-rich and equitable growth" financed by the Chinese Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security


Global South-South Development Expo 2017: ILO Solution on Skills Development, Youth Employment in the framework of South-South and triangular Cooperation (Antalya, Turkey, 27-30 November 2017)



Work and Society Workshop (Turin, Italy, 21-22 September 2017)


Roundtable on the link between Demographic Change, Decent Work and Silver Entrepreneurship Development in Asia and Europe (Turin, Italy, 18-19 May 2017)

E-campus link: https://ecampus.itcilo.org/course/view.php?id=558


ILO-China-ASEAN High Level Seminar to achieve the SDGs on Universal Social Protection through South-South and Triangular Cooperation (Beijing, China, 6-8 September 2017)

E-campus link: https://ecampus.itcilo.org/course/view.php?id=387

ILO link: http://www.social-protection.org/gimi/gess/Beijing.action?id=33

South-South and Triangular Cooperation Academy (Turin, Italy, 11-15 July 2016)

E-campus link: https://ecampus.itcilo.org/course/view.php?id=230 

ILO link: https://www.ilo.org/pardev/south-south/WCMS_458078/lang--en/index.htm




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