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Cablegate: Goc Requests U.S. Funding of Ilo-Sponsored

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS BOGOTA 010893

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ELAB PGOV PHUM CO ILO
SUBJECT: GOC REQUESTS U.S. FUNDING OF ILO-SPONSORED
COLOMBIA PROGRAMS

REF: BOGOTA 10447

Sensitive but unclassified. Not for Internet distribution.
-------
Summary
-------

1. (U) The GOC has requested that the U.S. help finance the
ILO's Special Program for Colombia, outlined in reftel. The
Embassy supports the program and recommends funding at least
three of the four projects because they assist in the
demobilization and reinsertion process, address major
concerns of the labor movement, and focus on local,
sustainable economic development. End Summary

----------------------------------------
GOC Joins ILO in Requesting U.S. Support
----------------------------------------

2. (U) On November 10, 2005, the GOC sent a diplomatic note
requesting that the U.S. support the Special Program for
Colombia whose financing was initially to be discussed at a
November 14-15 international donor's conference in Geneva
(copy faxed to WHA/AND). The diplomatic note followed the
ILO's separate request that the U.S. support four projects,
each with a pricetag of around $1 million (reftel).

--------------------------------------------- ----
Intersection of ILO Objectives and U.S. Interests
--------------------------------------------- ----

3. (SBU) The goals of the four ILO projects coincide with
U.S. objectives in Colombia; the embassy recommends that the
U.S. support at least the first three projects; the fourth
project is also valuable but could be somewhat duplicative of
other ILO efforts. The projects are aimed at: (1) displaced
and demobilized youth; (2) fundamental labor rights and
collective bargaining; (3) local economic development; and
(4) generating employment for women through local enterprises.

-- Employment for displaced and demobilized youth: this
project supports the U.S. goal of facilitating the
demobilization and reinsertion process. The project will
incorporate elements of an existing program in Cochabamba,
Bolivia that has successfully reintegrated youth involved in
narco-trafficking. The program supports our MPP objective of
dismantling criminal organizations.

-- Strengthening social dialogue over fundamental labor
rights and collective bargaining: this is an extension of the
first phase of ILO's Special Program. The tripartite
(government, labor, private sector) sessions organized
through this project address priority issues for the
Colombian labor movement, such as freedom of association.
The program supports our MPP objective of promoting universal
human rights standards.

-- Promote economic development at the local level: this
project aims to help local authorities and business leaders
to create jobs, increase productivity, and strengthen
competitiveness. The project will provide training to a wide
swath of local actors, including trade associations,
businesses, and municipal workers. The program supports our
MPP alternative development goal.

-- Generating employment for women: this project intends
to increase employment opportunities for women by working
with small businesses. While gender employment disparities
are a significant issue in Colombia, this project overlaps to
some extent with the ILO's more general local employment
initiative above.


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