07ASTANA3256, KAZAKHSTAN: UPDATE OF INFORMATION ON THE WORST FORMS OF

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
07ASTANA3256 2007-12-03 11:54 2011-08-30 01:44 UNCLASSIFIED Embassy Astana

VZCZCXRO2019
RR RUEHAST RUEHBI RUEHCI RUEHDBU RUEHLH RUEHLN RUEHPW RUEHVK RUEHYG
DE RUEHTA #3256 3371154
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 031154Z DEC 07
FM AMEMBASSY ASTANA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 1307
RUEHC/DEPT OF LABOR WASHDC
INFO RUEHAST/USOFFICE ALMATY 0037
RUEHGV/USMISSION GENEVA 0965
RUCNCIS/CIS COLLECTIVE 0323
RUCNCLS/SOUTH AND CENTRAL ASIA COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS ASTANA 003256 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
DEPT FOR SCA/CEN - O'MARA; DOL/ILAB - T. McCARTER; DRL/IL - T. 
DANG. 
 
E.O. 12958: N/A 
TAGS: ELAB EIND ETRD PHUM SOCI USAID KZ
SUBJECT: KAZAKHSTAN: UPDATE OF INFORMATION ON THE WORST FORMS OF 
CHILD LABOR 
 
REF: (A) STATE 158223 (B) 06 ASTANA 891 (C) 05 ALMATY 3112 
 
 (D) 04 ALMATY 3206 
 
1. Summary:  In accordance with reftel A, this telegram provides 
updated information on Kazakhstan's compliance with international 
norms on the prevention of the worst forms of child labor.  The 
cable updates reftels B, C, and D.  This information is provided to 
assist in the determination of Kazakhstan's continued eligibility 
for benefits under the Generalized System of Preferences (GSP). 
Post concludes that the GOK is meeting its obligations under the 
relevant ILO Conventions to prevent and punish illegal child labor 
practices.  There is currently no justification for altering 
Kazakhstan's eligibility for the GSP on the basis of child labor 
issues.  End summary. 
 
2. Kazakhstan, with a booming economy and a strong government, does 
not have an acute problem with the worst forms of child labor.  To 
the extent child labor in Kazakhstan exists, it is largely a 
function of migration from much poorer, neighboring Central Asian 
countries.  The bulk of child labor in Kazakhstan can be found in 
the country's South, where Uzbek migrants work on cotton fields and 
Kyrgyz migrants work on tobacco fields.  Due, in part, to the lack 
of transparency inherent in cross-border migration, no formal 
statistical survey of child labor in Kazakhstan is known to have 
been done. 
 
3. Children are generally not found in Kazakhstan doing the 
country's traditional hazardous jobs: heavy manufacturing, 
construction, and mining.  Farming, the occupation drawing the bulk 
of child workers in the country, is not officially designated as 
hazardous. 
 
4. Kazakhstan ratified International Labor Organization (ILO) 
Convention 182 on the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labor 
in 2003.  In 2005 the Government began, in collaboration with the 
ILO, a three-year program on elimination of the worst forms of child 
labor.  The program aims to raise awareness of the child labor 
problem.  One of its priorities is to study the commercial sexual 
exploitation of children, trafficking of minors, and the development 
of the methods of rehabilitation of minors engaged in prostitution. 
 
5. The ILO sees two countervailing forces acting in Kazakhstan: on 
one hand, rising incidence of child labor, and on the other, the 
government's increasing recognition - and the institutionalization - 
of its approach to the problem.  Kazakhstan's labor code has a 
specific section on child labor.  The authorities have a wide range 
of legislative tools at their disposal to effect criminal and 
administrative prosecution for child enslavement, abuse or coercion. 
 The Ministry of the Interior works to identify at-risk children 
(such as runaways, abused children, and children involved in gangs) 
and, in some cases, places them in temporary detention and 
rehabilitation centers.  These centers, which provide classes and 
counseling, can serve as a stepping stone to a return home 
(including, in case of migrant children, to the country of origin) 
or to a transfer to an orphanage. 
 
6. In Kazakhstan's southern regions, the Ministry of Education works 
together with the Interior Ministry and the local authorities to 
seek out school dropouts in markets, private farms, and other 
places.  Schools closely monitor attendance and contact students 
absent for extended periods of time.  Local authorities do make 
schooling available to migrant children. 
 
7.  Comment:  Post is satisfied that the Government of Kazakhstan 
takes the issue of child labor seriously.  While Kazakhstan is 
facing some challenges in this respect due to a growing challenge of 
illegal migrants, the government is making credible efforts to deal 
with the child labor problem.  Post recommends against any change in 
Kazakhstan's GSP eligibility on the basis of child labor issues. 
End comment. 
 
MILAS

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