ILO advises governments to focus on rural development policies

The ILO has advised governments to focus on policies that would develop rural areas, to achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030.

The Director-General of ILO, Guy Ryder, said in a report on Friday that achieving the SDGs would help to eliminate extreme poverty across the globe.

Ryder said that placing decent work in the rural economy high on national and international policy agenda was crucial to finding sustainable, long-term solutions to the challenges affecting millions of people.

He said that decent work was increasingly recognised as an indispensable driver of sustainable development, with the potential to lift households and communities out of poverty.

“In developing countries, over 80 per cent of the poor live in rural areas.

“A large share of the rural poor still depends on low-productivity subsistence farming for their livelihoods.

“The poorest rural households lack access to productive assets and often rely on income from wage employment.’’

He said, however, that numerous factors that had contributed to rural poverty included weak institutions, ineffective law enforcement and absence of an enabling environment for businesses.

The ILO chief named other factors as under-developed production system, poor infrastructure and limited access to services, including education, finance and health care.

He said that since the challenges facing rural economies were multi-faceted and inter-woven, there should be integrated cross-sector multi-stakeholder and context-specific interventions through close cooperation.