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World Cup: towards an agreement on workers' rights signed by Fifa for future editions

2022-12-05T07:38:51.155Z

The International Labor Organization (ILO) is negotiating with Fifa to reach an agreement which will come into force in the next host countries of the World Cup.



The director general of the International Labor Organization (ILO) is "

reasonably optimistic

" about the conclusion of an agreement with Fifa for the consideration of social rights in the awarding of the World Cup, after criticism on the 2022 edition in Qatar.

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The UN agency proposes to "

carry out a diligent review of the candidate countries

" for the organization of the World Cup, explained in an interview with AFP Gilbert F. Houngbo, who met the head of the Federation on Sunday in Doha. football international (Fifa), Gianni Infantino.

All the discussions we have had so far lead me to believe that FIFA is more than determined to ensure that, in the next World Cups, the question of social issues and respect for labor standards is critical.

“, said Houngbo, from the offices of the ILO in Qatar.

We have been talking for several years and we want to make sure that our fruitful cooperation will continue

,” assured Gianni Infantino in a press release published after this interview.

"

Strengthening the relationship between Fifa and the ILO is also part of the legacy of the 2022 World Cup

," he added.

The next edition of the competition will be held in 2026 in the United States, Mexico and Canada.

For the next one, in 2030, Spain and Portugal have formalized a joint candidacy with which Ukraine has joined.

South America also presents a joint file (Uruguay, Argentina, Paraguay and Chile).

In September, Egypt announced that it was in consultations with Greece and Saudi Arabia.

"

The world would gain if the process of bidding and awarding the organization of the World Cup, just like the Olympics or other sports, took into account the situation in the countries in question

", pleaded the former Prime Minister of Togo.

"

Very positive work

"

Since being awarded the organization of the 2022 World Cup at the end of 2010, Qatar has been under fire from criticism on the issue of human rights, and more particularly the working and living conditions of its hundreds of thousands of unskilled migrant workers from South Asia and Africa.

However, Houngbo believes that there have been "

double standards, especially lately

".

"

I have heard harsh criticism when Qatar has done better in this area than other countries

," he said.

For us, what is very important is to recognize the work that has been done and this work was sincerely very positive.

»

The leader notably cited the dismantling of the "

kafala

" system, which made employees quasi-properties of their employers, the limitation of working hours during the hottest periods, the establishment of a minimum monthly salary of 1,000 riyals (about 270 euros) and “

committees

” for dialogue between companies and their employees.

But progress is still necessary “

at the level of the implementation of these reforms

”, did not hide the DG of the ILO, because companies “

continue to have practices against the law

”.

He took as an example the compensation fund for unpaid wages set up in 2018. “

Until October 2022, this fund has paid more than 350 million (of dollars, note), which testifies of the government but also reflects the scale of the problem

," noted Houngbo.

No credible information

With figures ranging from 414 deaths between 2014 and 2020, on the Qatari side, to several thousand since 2010, on the NGO side, the total number of deaths in work accidents in the emirate during the preparations for the World Cup is also questionable.

"

I think the public needs to know the truth and sometimes that truth is to say that, honestly, there is no credible information

," commented the boss of the organization.

"

In the next phase of our cooperation with the Qatari authorities, we will put a lot of emphasis on the issue of data collection and analysis

," Houngbo said.

The presence of the ILO in Doha since 2018 must be sanctuarized in 2023. "

We are going to make the office permanent not only to continue the work we are doing here but possibly also to cover the region or even beyond

", specified the leader.

About the next edition of the World in the United States, Canada and Mexico in 2026, this one does not see "

a priori no problem

" but "

that does not prevent us from remaining vigilant

", he said. promised.

Source: lefigaro

All sports articles on 2022-12-05

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