International Labour Law Standards

Normlex is a new information system which brings together information on International Labour Standards (such as ratification information, reporting requirements, comments of the ILO’s supervisory bodies, etc.) as well as national labour and social security laws.

There are eight Fundamental Conventions. They cover subjects that are considered fundamental principles and rights at work: freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining; the elimination of all forms of forced or compulsory labour; the effective abolition of child labour; and the elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation.
Since 1995, the ILO has made a concerted effort to achieve universal ratification of these Conventions.
Specifically, the eight Fundamental Conventions are:

  • Freedom of Association and Protection of the Right to Organise Convention, 1948 (No. 87)
  • Right to Organise and Collective Bargaining Convention, 1949 (No. 98)
  • Forced Labour Convention, 1930 (No. 29)
  • Abolition of Forced Labour Convention, 1957 (No. 105)
  • Minimum Age Convention, 1973 (No. 138)
  • Worst Forms of Child Labour Convention, 1999 (No. 182)
  • Equal Remuneration Convention, 1951 (No. 100)
  • Discrimination (Employment and Occupation) Convention, 1958 (No. 111)

There are four Governance Conventions. They relate to, and are important for, the functioning of the international labour standards system and are considered as the most important instruments from the point of view of governance. As a result, the ILO encourages member States to ratify them as a matter of priority.
The four Governance Conventions are:

  • Labour Inspection Convention, 1947 (No. 81)
  • Labour Inspection (Agriculture) Convention, 1969 (No. 129)
  • Tripartite Consultation (International Labour Standards) Convention, 1976 (No. 144)
  • Employment Policy Convention, 1964 (No. 122)

An instrument goes through many stages during its life.

You can search and/or sort the lists of instruments by their status within NORMLEX;

The various statuses are:

  • Final Article Convention, not examined
  • Instrument to be revised
  • Instrument with Interim Status
  • No conclusions
  • Outdated instrument
  • Request for Information
  • Shelved convention
  • Withdrawn Instrument


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