Background & Description

ILO Conventions on forced labour, the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No.29), and the Abolition of Forced Labour Convention, 1957 (No. 105), have played a key role in establishing an overarching framework to combat the practice of forced and compulsory labour. These Conventions remain among the most widely ratified ILO instruments across the globe.

Pakistan has ratified these Conventions (No.29 and No. 105) in 1957 and 1960, respectively and they have been instrumental in establishing an overarching framework to combat the practice of forced and compulsory labour in Pakistan, including bonded labour. Over the past few decades, the Government of Pakistan has adopted a series of measures to eliminate forced, compulsory and bonded labour in Pakistan. Significant efforts have been made to eliminate traditional forms of forced labour and to release and rehabilitate those workers. After the 18th Amendment in the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, the provincial governments have adopted provincial labour policies and labour legislation to tackle and prevent decent work deficits, including modern systems of forced labour and trafficking to abolish forced and compulsory labour in all its forms. The federal government also came up with a National Strategic Framework to Eliminate Child and Bonded Labour in Pakistan to assist the provinces. This has involved a range of legal reforms, reviews of existing mechanisms and programmes, and the development of new legislation, framing of rules of business, agreements, and sector-specific interventions. However, despite efforts, forced labour persists in Pakistan and among Pakistani migrant workers engaged in economic activities outside of Pakistan.

The current laws on forced and compulsory labour have a particular focus on bonded labour, and they are not necessarily comprehensive enough to cover the more modern forms of forced and compulsory labour. Moreover, not all provinces and territories are still in the process enacting such laws, but are relying on the laws from before the 18th Amendment and ultimately the Constitution of Pakistan, that prohibits forced labour[1].        

As a recipient of GSP Plus status[2], Pakistan is committed to strengthening the application of the ratified ILO Conventions on forced labour, child labour, freedom of association and collective bargaining, non-discrimination, and equality in employment. In this regard, the MoOP&HRD has requested the ILO to extend its technical assistance to draft a stand-alone law on forced labour covering all aspects of the Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29) and the Abolition of Forced labour Convention, 1957 (No 105) and potentially the provisions of the Protocol of 2014 to the Forced Labour Convention. While the stand-alone law may be applicable to Islamabad Capital Territory, the law may also serve as model law for other provinces and territories.

Scope of the Assignment

Preparation and finalization of a draft comprehensive model law on forced labour covering all aspects of relevant ILO instruments, and with the inputs from/in consultation with ILO tripartite constituents. The assignment would take place in regular coordination and consultation with the Federal Government and the ILO.

Specific Tasks

Under the overall coordination of the ILO Country Office for Pakistan, and with technical guidance from ILO technical specialists, the consultant is expected to perform the following tasks during the assignment:

  1. Conduct a desk review of the existing policy and legislative environment as well as jurisprudential frameworks; map out provisions in federal and provincial laws around the subject matter.
  2. Undertake a desk review of international good practices in the relevant area including similar legislation in other countries.
  3. Conduct discussions with the MoOP&HRD and ILO to understand their perspectives of the need for a comprehensive forced labour legislation, and expectations from it.
  4. Conduct desk review and discussions with key stakeholders including ministries and authorities responsible for justice and law enforcement to understand the application, advantages and gaps in the existing legislative provisions and policies.
  5. Preparation of a draft comprehensive model law (“stand-alone”) on forced labour.
  6. Share the first draft of the model law on forced labour with MoOP&HRD and ILO.
  7. Partake in the consultation and validation process to obtain inputs and views of ILO social partners and a wider group of relevant stakeholders as determined by ILO and the MoOP&HRD
  8. Incorporate feedback from stakeholders and ILO’s technical experts into the draft law as appropriate and submit oversight over comments and the considerations/actions taken.
  9. Submit the revised comprehensive model law to the MoOP&HRD and ILO.


All deliverables are to be presented in English, both in electronic and hard copies of each indicated below:

  1. An inception report covering a work plan, a list of essential and relevant documents or information to be reviewed and a list of key stakeholders for bilateral consultation (inception report for ILO and MoOP&HRD endorsement).
  2. A report based on a desk review of the existing policy and legislative environment, including provisions of federal and provincial laws around the subject matter, as well as jurisprudential frameworks.
  3. Minutes of discussion/meetings with the MoOP&HRD and/or ILO and other stakeholder consulted.
  4. A draft comprehensive model law on forced labour.
  5. Compilation of feedback received from stakeholders and ILO experts with indications of considerations/actions taken for each comment.
  6. Revised comprehensive model law on forced labour after incorporating the feedback.
Requirements and Skills
  • University degree in law, social/economic development or any other related discipline, with an experience of at least ten years-post qualification. Advanced degree preferred.
  • Excellent knowledge of legislation drafting and law formulation
  • Practical knowledge and familiarity with the justice and law enforcement processes in the country, preferably in areas related to the subject matter.
  • Excellent knowledge of international legal framework pertaining to forced labour, ILO and UN conventions, ILO supervisory and oversight mechanisms
  • Ability to communicate through electronic and remote communication means like skype, conference call, telephony etc.
  • Good knowledge of the role and operations of UN system activities for development.  
  • Ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing.
  • Demonstrated experience of working with diverse stakeholders
  • Excellent interpersonal communication, coordination, and persuasive skills
  • Ability to work under pressure and manage timelines
How to Apply

Complete Terms of Reference



About Organization

The International Labour Organization (ILO) is a United Nations agency whose mandate is to advance social and economic justice through setting international labour standards.[1] Founded in 1919 under the League of Nations, it is the first and oldest specialised agency of the UN. The ILO has 187 member states: 186 out of 193 UN member states plus the Cook Islands. It is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, with around 40 field offices around the world, and employs some 2,700 staff from over 150 nations, of whom 900 work in technical cooperation programmes and projects.

The ILO's international labour standards are broadly aimed at ensuring accessible, productive, and sustainable work worldwide in conditions of freedom, equity, security and dignity.[2][3] They are set forth in 189 conventions and treaties, of which eight are classified as fundamental according to the 1998 Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work; together they protect freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining, the elimination of forced or compulsory labour, the abolition of child labour, and the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation. The ILO is subsequently a major contributor to international labour law.

Within the UN system the organization has a unique tripartite structure: all standards, policies, and programmes require discussion and approval from the representatives of governments, employers, and workers. This framework is maintained in the ILO's three main bodies: The International Labour Conference, which meets annually to formulate international labour standards; the Governing Body, which serves as the executive council and decides the agency's policy and budget; and the International Labour Office, the permanent secretariat that administers the organization and implements activities. The secretariat is led by the Director-General, currently Guy Ryder of the United Kingdom, who was elected by the Governing Body in 2012.

In 1969, the ILO received the Nobel Peace Prize for improving fraternity and peace among nations, pursuing decent work and justice for workers, and providing technical assistance to other developing nations.[4] In 2019, the organization convened the Global Commission on the Future of Work, whose report made ten recommendations for governments to meet the challenges of the 21st century labor environment; these include a universal labour guarantee, social protection from birth to old age and an entitlement to lifelong learning.[5][6] With its focus on international development, it is a member of the United Nations Development Group, a coalition of UN organization aimed at helping meet the Sustainable Development Goals.