chapter  11
16 Pages

The Contribution of the World Bank in Fostering Respect for ILO Child Labour Standards

The conception of child labour has been transformed into a fundamental human right of children against exploitative labour and is enshrined in customary international law. Positive duties to protect the rights of children have been developed. This chapter presents the case studies that highlight the significant obstacles to the achievement of the goal of eliminating exploitative child labour by 2016. There have been real achievements in the fight against exploitative child labour since 1992 when the International Programme for the Elimination of Child Labour (IPEC) was launched. Above all, poverty remains a root cause of child labour in developing countries, and the rights of the child have not yet been embedded into the world trade systems. The earliest laws on the employment of children were essentially public health measures. Humanitarian concerns of entrepreneurs like Robert Owen led to the British Act of 1819 limiting the hours of work of children in factories 'the real beginnings of industrial legislation'.