ECAM Vice President Ivy Kwatiwani said this in Blantyre during the association’s high level consultative workshop with financial service providers on the fight against child labour.
Said Kwatiwani: “This event is another important step towards the elimination of the worst forms of child labour. This is well-aligned with ECAM’s primary role of promoting, guiding, and protecting employers’ interest in labour employment and socio-economic issues.
“ECAM recognizes the crucial role that employers in Malawi play in an effort to help children. And together with the International Labour Organization (ILO) strongly believe that the financial sector has many opportunities to positively contribute to eliminating child labour,” said Kwatiwani.
She said they thought of engaging with financial institutions on child labour issues as they are the market players in the supply chain of tea and coffee where child labour is mostly recorded, adding that the supply chain strategy used by Accelerating Action for the Elimination of Child Labour in supply chains in Africa (ACCEL Africa) project in addressing child labor, shows the important role that financial institutions plays as financier within respective agribusiness supply chains that include tea and coffee.
Some of the financial service providers that attended the meeting included; representatives from Bankers Association of Malawi, National Economic Empowerment Fund (NEEF), Nyasa Capital Finance and CDH Bank just to mention but a few who all said they have policies that bar minors from being involved in their service provision.
Ecam works with Government through the Ministry of Labour, and workers representatives Malawi Congress of Trade Union. The organisation also works closely with the Reserve Bank of Malawi and other different key stakeholders including the Ministry of Finance in various interventions where it speaks on behalf of employers.
Ecam also has over 220 subscribing direct members and 6 associations that has over 277,000 indirect members that includes players in the financial sectors and affiliated to International Labour Organization (ILO), and a member of SADC Private Sector Forum (SPSF).