The ILO and the Republic of Korea enhance partnership that includes support for the Global Accelerator

Press Release |

GENEVA (ILO News) – The International Labour Organization (ILO) and the Government of the Republic of Korea have signed a new partnership agreement, marking a significant milestone in their collaborative efforts to promote decent work and social justice globally.  

The agreement was signed during the 112th International Labour Conference by the ILO Director-General, Gilbert F. Houngbo, and the Minister of Employment and Labour of the Republic of Korea, Lee Jung Sik. 

MOU signing ceremony
Image Credits


The 2024-2026 Korea-ILO Partnership Programme, will see an enhancement of cooperation across various areas, including in support of the UN Global Accelerator on Jobs and Social Protection for Just Transitions, and specific projects within the Asia-Pacific region  

With a significant increase in funding for the programme – USD9.15 million for the period 2024-26 up from USD4.6 million for the previous phase – the partnership underscores the Republic of Korea's growing role as a key partner in the ILO’s development cooperation programme. 

Under the partnership, Korea will further strengthen its support for the Global Accelerator, through a global project focusing on labour market policies, including skills and social protection linkages, and macro-structural policies. Launched in September 2021, the initiative aims to accelerate progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), support the creation of decent jobs and extend social protection to the people who are currently excluded.  

“We believe the Global Accelerator is a timely and effective means to promote necessary measures through multilateral cooperation for jobs and social protection,” said Lee Jung Sik. 

The new phase of the partnership agreement deepens collaborative efforts in priority themes including labour market policies and employment services, in particular, for older workers; youth employment; social protection; occupational safety and health; international labour standards; and, cooperatives. The partnership also prioritizes crosscutting areas such as a just transition to a low-carbon, greener economy. 

Speaking at the signing, Mr Houngbo said, "The Republic of Korea has been a steadfast partner in our efforts to promote decent work and social justice for many years. This new phase of our partnership deepens our collaborative efforts in critical areas that are essential for achieving sustainable development." 

The launch of this new phase of the Korea-ILO Partnership Programme comes at a crucial time, as the ILO intensifies its call for social justice on a global scale. The Government of Korea’s decision to join the Global Coalition for Social Justice further strengthens this collaboration, demonstrating a shared commitment to these essential goals. 

The ILO will collaborate closely with institutions affiliated with the Korean Ministry of Employment and Labor (MOEL) to ensure the effective implementation of the Programme. This collaboration includes the engagement of seconded officials from Korea to work in key technical units at the ILO to further strengthen the implementation of these initiatives. 

Listen to the message from Minister Lee Jung Sik on why countries should support the Global Accelerator on Jobs and Social Protection for Just Transitions.