Within the context of ongoing technical assistance project in Turkey on “Improving Occupational Health and Safety in Turkey through Compliance with International Labour Standards”, a tripartite meeting was organized on 11-12 February 2016 for discussing the outcomes of the Gap Analyses on Safety and Health in Construction Convention, 1988 (No. 167) and the Safety and Health in Mining Convention, 1995 (No. 176).
Detailed examination of the national compliance with the requirements of Conventions No. 167 and 176 was done with the active participation of the stakeholders including government, employers’ and workers’ organizations. While legislative compliance with the Conventions was found to be ensured to a large extent in both sectors, both Conventions Nos 167 and 176 contain in some respects more stringent requirements than Convention No. 155 regarding, for example, workers and their representative’s participation in the area of occupational safety and health. Shortcomings were identified, however, regarding the application in practice of the relevant legislation.
Concerning Convention No. 176, it was discussed that there was a need to develop a coherent national policy on safety and health in mining which met both national and international expectations. As per Convention No. 167, it was assesed that much less information regarding practice was available for Construction, as no study similar to the one on mining – Contractual arrangements in Turkey’s Coal Mines (prepared in cooperation with the Turkish Economic Policy Research Foundation (TEPAV) ) could be carried out. Conducting such a study would be important to complement the knowledgebase regarding the conditions in the construction industry in a larger context. It was underscored that while due account may be taken of the necessary safety and health precautions mainly in complex and big construction projects, ninety percent of the Turkish construction industry was composed of small and medium enterprises.
It was concluded that both Conventions articulated to implement more effectively the rights and duties of employers and workers and their representatives in these sectors.