Law-Growth Nexus II Project: Consensus reached on RIA discussions
On 25th February, 2015, the Law-Growth Nexus II Project: Closure Phase (LGN II Closure) hosted a Stakeholder Discussion Meeting to consolidate inputs into the Project's Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA). More than 30 participants took part in the discussions, representing the private sector; workers' and employers' associations as well as Government departments, including the Ministry of Labour and Social Security, Ministry of Finance and National Planning, the National Pension Scheme Authority and the Workers' Compensation Fund Control Board.
A key outcome of the meeting was the consensus reached by stakeholders on the need to create a fair differentiated framework for labour regulation that small construction businesses can afford to comply with to incentivise formalisation, which will in turn enhance their growth prospects and the decency of work created. In particular, the need to make labour laws more attuned to the construction business environment was emphasized. In particular, various aspects of minimum wages and conditions of service, as well as social protection schemes were strongly emphasised.
The discussion meeting was part of the LGN II Closure's on-going Regulatory Impact Assessment, which seeks to generate knowledge of the impact of labour laws on the profitability of MSMEs in the construction sector. It is expected that the RIA process will contribute to labour law reform processes within the sector for a more enabling environment that will facilitate construction MSMEs to create more and better jobs.
The RIA process is being led by the Zambia Federation of Employers (ZFE), although it emphasizes tripartite ownership at each stage in the process. The next step will be to seek validation of the consolidated RIA Report from the LGN II Closure Steering Committee before feeding recommendations for reform into the construction sector minimum wage enactment process.