Minister Vermeend of Social Affairs and Employment will open the conference. Furthermore, Minister Herfkens for Development Co-operation, Secretary of State Ybema of Economic Affairs, ILO Director General Somavia and IALI president Albracht will address the conference. Three hundred people from 50 countries will participate, all representatives of national or local authorities, employers organizations and trade unions, labour inspection services, NGO’s and multilateral organizations.

The conference’s objective is to form alliances in the battle against the most grievous forms of child labour, specifically where this implies working under very harsh and dangerous circumstances. The first aim is to identify and name those forms of child labour in industry, agriculture and the informal economy that rank among the most dangerous jobs. In this matter, the governments, the organizations of employers and employees and the labour inspection services have their own role and responsibility.

This conference can be regarded as a sequel to the Amsterdam Child Labour Conference of 1997, the outcome of which was instrumental for the establishment of the ILO convention 182 in 1999. This convention is aimed at the immediate banishment of the most grievous forms of child labour and has by now been ratified by 116 countries, amongst which the Netherlands.

Knowledge and experience on how to deal with the most exploiting forms of child labour will be exchanged during workshops and panel discussions. Furthermore, successful alliances against the most exploiting forms of child labour will be discussed and dilemmas will be named. The members of the IALI will do this through a separate programme. The opening and closing of the conference will be done jointly.