ASEAN-ILO/Japan Project

Experts networking on extension of social protection coverage in ASEAN, 23-24 May 2017, Bangkok

Despite significant progress in expanding social protection during the last decades marked by the introduction of new social insurance and tax-funded social protection schemes across all ten ASEAN countries, still a large portion of their population remains excluded from social protection coverage.

The ILO/Japan ESSA project is supporting ASEAN tripartite constituents in the search for innovative solutions to extend social protection. The process will conclude with an ASEAN tripartite seminar on extension of social security coverage, in November 2018. To nourish the discussions of the tripartite seminar, the project has engaged in research work, country experience review, experts’ discussions, capacity building activities and training, including activities specifically for workers’ and employers’ representatives.

In 23 and 24 May 2017, experts and policy makers from ASEAN countries, Africa and Latin America, as well as UN agencies, met in Bangkok, Thailand, to:

- explore new ideas and innovations for extending social security coverage in ASEAN, reflecting on concrete country experiences;

- create a network of experts that can contribute to further research in this area and be deployed to provide assistance to ASEAN member States in their efforts to extend social protection coverage.


Seminar's material

Concept note


List of participants



Session brief No.1: Introduction session

Session Brief No.2: The situaiton in ASEAN

What we should know about this region:

  • Economic and employment situation, challenges ahead when it comes to extend social protection: ageing, employment structure, labour migration, low social protection expenditures, growing inequalities, governance and lack of trust in public institutions, Nuno Cunha, Senior Social Protection Specialist for South-East and East Asia and the Pacific, ILO
  • The ASEAN regional integration process:  an opportunity, Celine Peyron Bista, Chief Technical Advisor on Social Protection, ILO

Session Brief No.3: Challenges in extending social protection

What are the challenges at micro-level?

  • Obstacles to the extension: findings of the assessment in Viet Nam and Indonesia, Paulette Castel, Independent Social Protection Consultant (Presentation)


- Barnaby Mulenga, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Labour, Zambia (Presentation)

- Haiyani Rumondang, DJSN member, Director General for Industrial Relations and Social Security, Ministry of Manpower, Indonesia

Session Brief No.4: Discussing the main obstacles to the extension of social protection coverage in ASEAN

Session Brief No.5: Extension of social protection, a global priority

  • Patrik Andersson, Chief, Social Integration Section, Social Development Division, UNESCAP
  • Nuno Cunha, ILO
  • Oscar Cetrangolo, Professor and Researcher, University of Buenos Aires (Presentation)

Session Brief No.6: Learning from country experiences

  • China, Zambia: extension of old-age pension through integrated approaches
  • Indonesia, Thailand: sectoral schemes, schemes for workers in the informal economy 
  • Argentina, Mongolia: simplification of procedures, link with tax system and commercial banks and State’s programmes
  • Mongolia: extension of maternity protection
  • Singapore, Cambodia: opportunities through new technologies
  • Viet Nam: Universal health care; tax-funded or social health insurance?

Session Brief No.7: Thinking of innovations for ASEAN countries

Some of ILO support tools: Global Guide, Course in Jakarta in October 2017, Ippei Tsugura, Social Protection Junior Officer, ILO Geneva (Presentation)

Additional resources


Summary of the "Extension of social protection to workers in the informal economy in Zambia: Lessons learnt from the field research on domestic workers, small scale farmers anda constructions workers"

Extending and promoting social protection amongst MSMEs and informal workers in Zambia’s building construction industry (UN, Ministry of Zambia, unpublished)

Latin America

Simplified Tax Regime named «monotributo» as labor formalization instrument in the Southern Cone of Latin America

ILO, 2014: Monotributo en America Latina: el caso de Argentina, Brazil y Uruguay (ILO, Lima)