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  • 07 September, 2022

  • 8 Min Read

World Social Protection Report 2020–22

World Social Protection Report 2020–22

An Asia and the Pacific-focused study from the International Labour Organization (ILO) was just published.

Major Points

  • The report's content includes a global review of the strides made in the last ten years in extending social protection and constructing rights-based social protection systems, including floors, as well as information on the COVID-19 pandemic's effects.
  • The report thus makes a crucial contribution to the framework for monitoring the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Worldwide perspective

  • Deep-seated disparities and large gaps in social protection coverage, comprehensiveness, and sufficiency have been made clear by the pandemic in every country.
  • An unprecedented social protection policy response was sparked by COVID-19.
  • Increased social protection spending will remain essential while the socioeconomic recovery is still in its early stages.
  • With regard to the direction of their social protection systems, countries are at a turning point.

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Significant Findings

  • Little Spending: The average global social protection expenditure is 12.9%.
  • Different nations have different levels of social protection: in Mongolia, New Zealand, Singapore, and Australia, the percentage is 100%, whereas, in Myanmar and Cambodia, it is less than 10%.
  • The majority is completely vulnerable: As of 2020, just 46.9% of the world's population have access to at least one social safety benefit, leaving 53.1%, or 4.1 billion people, completely unprotected.
  • In South-Eastern Asia, 33.2 per cent of the population has access to at least one social protection measure, compared to 22.8 per cent in Southern Asia. Bangladesh and Pakistan, the latter's two most populated nations, barely account for 28.4% and 9.2%, respectively, of their respective populations.
  • Working-age people are only partially protected: The vast majority of the world's working-age population, about 4 billion people, is only partially or not at all protected.
  • No Protection in the Case of Illness or Injury: In the Asia Pacific region, three out of every four employees are not covered in the event of illness or injury at work.
  • Low levels of work injury coverage are common in nations with lower GDP per capita, such as Afghanistan, India, Nepal, and Pakistan, where less than 5% of workers are covered.
  • At 33.5 per cent, just a small portion of those with severe disabilities receive disability benefits globally.
  • Gender Inequality: Due to the social protection system's intrinsic gender disparity, women's coverage is 8 percentage points lower than men's.
  • To achieve universal or nearly universal adequate maternity coverage, certain nations have achieved notable progress. Even though helping pregnant women has significant developmental effects, only 44,9% of new mothers receive a monetary advantage worldwide.
  • There is insufficient social protection for children: Only 26.4% of children worldwide receive social protection benefits, and the vast majority of youngsters are still not adequately covered by social security.
  • In some areas, the effective coverage is especially low: 18% in Asia and the Pacific, 15.4% in the Arab States, and 12.6% in Africa.

Results for India

  • Comparing India to the rest of Asia, only 24.4% of Indians receive social protection benefits, which is even lower than Bangladesh's (28.1%) rate.
  • Less money is spent on social protection: India spends only 8.6% of its GDP on this, which is around 4% less than the average worldwide.
  • Lower Coverage: In India, just 24.4% of the population has access to at least one form of social security.
  • Benefits & Low Investment: The amounts transferred under non-contributory benefits are typically too low to offer adequate protection due to the comparatively low expenditure in social protection.
  • India's social security payouts are less than five percent of GDP per capita since contributory schemes are mainly restricted to those working in the formal sector and non-contributory schemes are still primarily focused on the poorest.
  • Combination of Schemes: Contributory and non-contributory schemes were used in India to accomplish social protection.
  • Attempts to gradually expand coverage by fusing various tiers of social security.
  • For instance, the MGNREGA (Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act) provides up to 100 days of limited protection for workers in the unorganized sector.

Social Security

  • In addition to providing additional support for families with children, social protection also includes access to health care and income security measures, particularly those related to old age, unemployment, sickness, disability, work injuries, maternity, and the loss of a family's primary breadwinner.
  • It is a crucial tool that may aid nations at all stages of development in both the social and economic spheres.
  • It can support greater equality, better health and education, more sustainable economic systems, better-managed migration, and adherence to fundamental rights.
  • Importance: It assists people and families, particularly the poor and vulnerable, in coping with crises and shocks, locating employment, enhancing productivity, making investments in their children's health and education, and safeguarding the ageing population.
  • It increases production and human capital, lessens inequality, fosters resilience, and breaks the cycle of poverty that passes down through generations.
  • Offering people a chance to escape poverty and contribute to society, it also promotes equality of opportunity.

World Social Protection Report 2020-22

  • The International Labor Organization is the publisher (ILO).
  • It analyses the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and provides a global overview of current advancements in social protection systems, including social protection floors.
  • It provides a wide range of global, regional, and national data on social protection coverage, benefits, and public expenditures based on new data.
  • In addition to outlining important policy recommendations, the paper identifies protection gaps and discusses how they relate to the goals of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Way Forward

  • Universal social protection: The foundation of a human-centred strategy for achieving social justice is the establishment of universal social protection and the realization of the human right to social security for all.
  • Increased Investment for Enhanced Coverage: Low-income countries would need to invest an additional US$77.9 billion annually, lower-middle-income countries an additional US$362.9 billion annually, and upper-middle-income countries an additional US$750.8 billion annually to ensure at least basic social protection coverage. That amounts to 15.9, 5.1, and 3.1% of their respective GDPs, respectively.
  • Social justice and building a sustainable, resilient future go hand in hand, and the global community must understand this. Effective, all-encompassing social protection is crucial for both social justice and good employment.

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