Current Affairs

The ILO Report on Forced Labour Profits

The ILO Report on Forced Labour Profits:

Forced labor remains a pervasive issue impacting millions globally, as highlighted in a recent study by the International Labour Organization (ILO) unveiled in Geneva. The report reveals that forced labor generates illicit profits amounting to $36 billion annually, marking a 37% surge since 2014. This escalation is attributed to both the rise in forced labor instances and increased gains from victim exploitation.

Key Discoveries:

Criminal entities amass $236 billion yearly in illicit profits from forced labor within the private sector.

The surge in illegal profits amounts to an additional $64 billion (a 37% increase) compared to 2014.

Traffickers and perpetrators now garner nearly $10,000 per victim, a notable rise from $8,269 a decade ago.

In 2021, an estimated 27.6 million individuals were trapped in forced labor on any given day.

Forced commercial sexual exploitation contributes to 73% of the overall illegal profits.

Regional Distribution of Illicit Profits:

The report outlines the regional distribution of annual illicit profits from forced labor:

Europe and Central Asia: $84 billion

Asia and the Pacific: $62 billion

The Americas: $52 billion

Africa: $20 billion

Arab States: $18 billion

Response from the ILO Director-General:

Expressing grave concern over the deteriorating scenario, ILO Director-General Gilbert Houngbo emphasized, "Forced labor perpetuates cycles of poverty and exploitation, striking at the core of human dignity. It's evident that the situation has worsened." Houngbo urged swift international action to combat this injustice, protect workers' rights, and uphold principles of fairness and equality.


The study employed surveys among various worker groups, including Indians in Saudi Arabia and Qatar, to compile data and insights on forced labor. Covering statistics for 2021, the report offers a comprehensive analysis of the economics surrounding forced labor.

Impact on Victims:

Forced labor inflicts severe harm on victims, perpetuating cycles of destitution and exploitation. The report underscores the pressing need for collective international action to eradicate this injustice and safeguard the rights of workers.

Key Exam Facts:

Founded in 1919, the ILO is the oldest specialized agency under the United Nations.

With 187 member states, the ILO is committed to advancing social justice and universally recognized human and labor rights.

As the sole tripartite U.N. agency, it unites governments, employers, and workers' representatives to formulate policies promoting Decent Work for all.

Awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 1969, the ILO was recognized for its efforts in advancing peace and social justice.

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The ILO Report on Forced Labour Profits