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Fiji Time: 5:26 PM on Friday 25 April

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Fiji on track

Felix Chaudhary
Tuesday, February 26, 2013

FIJI has done well in its efforts to address child labour and in implementing policies and programs to effectively deal with the issue and bring about a change in mind-sets and attitudes.

This was the view of David Lamotte, director of the International Labour Organisation office for South Pacific island countries who made the comment at the Fiji National Child Labour Forum yesterday.

However, despite the country's advances in dealing with the global issue, Mr Lamotte said more studies and surveys were needed to effectively gauge the level and extent of child labour in Fiji and other Pacific island countries.

"In the Pacific, the child labour trend is hard to determine because statistics of children in child labour are absent," he said.

"Child labour studies supported by the ILO in recent years in Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Kiribati and Tuvalu highlight two main issues — the increasing numbers of children moving into the worst forms of child labour, especially commercial sexual exploitation and the problem of out-of-school children and youth unemployment.

"Human trafficking involving children has been highlighted in the past few weeks in Fiji and this would be an emerging and challenging issue to tackle," he said.