Last Updated: Friday, 29 August 2014, 14:18 GMT

2006 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - Kazakhstan

Publisher United States Department of Labor
Author Bureau of International Labor Affairs
Publication Date 31 August 2007
Cite as United States Department of Labor, 2006 Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labor - Kazakhstan, 31 August 2007, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/48d7493c57.html [accessed 29 August 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Selected Statistics and Indicators on Child Labor
Percent of children 5-14 estimated as working:Unavailable
Minimum age of work:162282
Age to which education is compulsory:16 or grade 92283
Free public education:Yes2284
Gross primary enrollment rate in 2002:1022285
Net primary enrollment rate in 2002:91%2286
Percent of children 5-14 attending school:Unavailable
Percent of primary school entrants likely to reach grade 5:Unavailable
Ratified Convention 138:5/18/20012287
Ratified Convention 182:2/26/20032288
ILO-IPEC participating country:Yes, associated2289

Incidence and Nature of Child Labor

Most working children in rural areas of Kazakhstan are involved in agriculture.2290 Many children migrate to Kazakhstan during the harvest season to work in the cotton and tobacco industry.2291 Children working in the cotton and tobacco industry suffer from limited rest time, malnutrition, and limited access to health care.2292 In urban areas, the country's increasingly formalized labor market has led to a decrease in many forms of child work. However, children are still found begging, loading freight, delivering goods in markets, washing cars, and working at gas stations.2293

Reports also indicate a rise in the number of children exploited in prostitution and pornography in urban areas. Police estimate that one-third of all street prostitutes in Kazakhstan are minors.2294 Children working as domestic servants are often less visible to law enforcement officials and thus are vulnerable to exploitation.2295 The trafficking of children is a problem in Kazakhstan.2296

Child Labor Laws and Enforcement

The law sets the minimum age for employment at 16 years.2297 However, children may work at age 15 with parental consent if they have completed their compulsory education.2298 With parental consent, children 14 years or older may perform light work, if the work does not interfere with school attendance or pose a health threat.2299 Children under 18 are prohibited from working in dangerous conditions, overtime, or at night. Children between 16 and 18 may not work more than 36 hours per week. Children between 15 and 16 years (or 14 and 16 years during non-school periods) may not work more than 24 hours per week. The labor authorities determine a list of dangerous occupations in which children are prohibited from working.2300

The constitution prohibits forced labor, except under a court mandate or in a state of emergency.2301 The minimum age for compulsory military service is 18.2302 The law prohibits the involvement of minors in the creation and advertisement of erotic products.2303 Procuring a minor to engage in prostitution, begging, or gambling is illegal and punishable by up to 3 years of imprisonment.2304 The keeping of brothels for prostitution and pimping is outlawed and punishable by 2 to 5 years of imprisonment.2305 New laws enacted in 2006 impose a 10year prison sentence if a minor is involved in trafficking and a 12-year sentence if persons are trafficked abroad.2306

The Ministry of Labor is responsible for enforcing child labor laws and imposing fines for administrative offenses. The Ministry of the Interior is responsible for investigating criminal child labor offenses.2307 The Ministry of Labor has 400 labor inspectors. Each of the country's 16 districts has labor inspectors. They are empowered to levy fines for labor violations and refer criminal cases to law enforcement authorities.2308 Mandatory licensing laws for tourist agencies were enforced by the Procurator's Office, and inspections were conducted throughout the year to uncover agencies involved in trafficking.2309 However, the U.S. Department of State reports that endemic corruption and bribery of law enforcement officials has hampered anti-trafficking efforts.2310

Current Government Policies and Programs to Eliminate the Worst Forms of Child Labor

A National Plan to Combat Trafficking covering the years 2006-2008 was developed by an interagency working group including the Ministries of Justice, Internal Affairs, Foreign Affairs, Education and Science, Labor and Social Welfare, Culture, Information and Sports; the Procurator General; and the Commission on Women and Family.2311 The Children for Kazakhstan National Program (2006-2011) was approved during the 2006. It aims to create a comprehensive national child protection strategy.2312

The government, the IOM, and 19 local NGOs have cooperated on an anti-trafficking information campaign, and the Ministry of Justice has distributed a booklet for Kazakh migrant workers and maintained a hotline for victims.2313 In cooperation with the IOM and other NGOs, the government is also participating in several other awareness programs to prevent trafficking, prosecute offenders, and assist victims.2314 Local governments have supported and cooperated with NGOs to provide services to victims.2315 Public and private media have been required to broadcast government-sponsored anti-trafficking public service announcements.2316 The Ministry of Education has stated that anti-trafficking components are included in the curriculum of all high schools and colleges.2317

USDOL is funding a 3-year USD 2.5 million ILO-IPEC project that will build the capacity of national institutions to eliminate the worst forms of child labor as well as share information and experiences in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan.2318


2282 Government of Kazakhstan, Labour Law of the Republic of Kazakhstan, 1999, (January 2000), Section 11, no. 1; available from http://natlex.ilo.org/txt/E99KAZ01.htm.

2283 U.S. Department of State, "Kazakhstan," in Country Reports on Human Rights Practices – 2006, Washington, DC, March 6, 2007, Section 5; available from http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2006/78820.htm. See also UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, Initial Reports of States parties due in 1996: Kazakhstan, CRC/C/41/Add.13, prepared by The Republic of Kazakhstan, pursuant to Article 44 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, September 24, 2002, paras. 257 and 267; available from http://www.unhchr.ch/.

2284 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2006: Kazakhstan," Section 5. See also UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, Initial reports of Kazakhstan, CRC/C/41/Add.13, paras. 257 and 267.

2285 UNESCO Institute for Statistics, Gross and Net Enrolment Ratios, Primary; [Total,] accessed December 2005; available from http://stats.uis.unesco.org/

2286 Ibid.

2287 ILO, List of Ratifications of International Labor Conventions, Minimum Age Convention, 1973, February 5, 2007; available from http://webfusion.ilo.org/public/db/standards/normes/appl/appl-byConvYear.cfm?hdroff=1&Lang=EN&conv=C138.

2288 ILO, List of Ratifications of International Labor Conventions, Worst Forms of Child Labor Convention, 1999, February 5, 2007; available from http://webfusion.ilo.org/public/db/standards/normes/appl/appl-byConvYear.cfm?hdroff=1&Lang=EN&conv=C182.

2289 ILO-IPEC, IPEC Action Against Child Labor: Highlights 2006, Geneva, October 2006, 29; available from http://www.ilo.org/iloroot/docstore/ipec/prod/eng/20061019_Implementationreport_eng_Web.pdf.

2290 ILO-IPEC, CAR Capacity Building Project: Regional Program on the Worst Forms of Child Labour, project document, RER/04/P54/USA, Geneva, September 2004, 5-7. See also U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2006: Kazakhstan," Section 6d. See also ILO-IPEC, Child Labour in Tobacco and Cotton Growing in Kazakhstan: Rapid Assessment Report, Almaty, 2006.

2291 ILO-IPEC, Child Labour in Tobacco and Cotton Growing in Kazakhstan: Rapid Assessment Report, vii.

2292 Ibid., ix.

2293 ILO-IPEC, CAR Capacity Building Project, project document, 5-7. See also U.S. Embassy – Almaty, reporting, August 22, 2004. See also U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2006: Kazakhstan," Section 6d.

2294 Liz Kelly, Fertile Fields: Trafficking in Persons in Central Asia, International Organization for Migration, April 2005, 61.

2295 ILO-IPEC, CAR Capacity Building Project, project document, 8.

2296 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2006: Kazakhstan," Section 5.

2297 Government of Kazakhstan, Labour Law, Section 11, no. 1.

2298 Ibid., Section 11, no. 2. See also U.S. Embassy – Almaty, reporting, August 22, 2004.

2299 Government of Kazakhstan, Labour Law, Section 11, no. 3.

2300 Ibid., Sections 46-49.

2301 Government of Kazakhstan, Constitution of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Article 24. See also Government of Kazakhstan, Labour Law, Section 6.

2302 Coalition to Stop the Use of Child Soldiers, Child Soldiers Global Report – Kazakhstan, November 17, 2004; available from http://www.child-soldiers.org/document_get.php?id=909.

2303 UN Committee on the Rights of the Child, Initial reports of Kazakhstan, CRC/C/41/Add.13, para 355.

2304 Criminal Code of the Kazakh Republic as cited by The Protection Project, Kazakhstan, March, 2002.

2305 Ibid.

2306 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2006: Kazakhstan," Section 5.

2307 Ibid., Section 6d.

2308 U.S. Embassy – Almaty, reporting, August 22, 2004.

2309 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2006: Kazakhstan," Section 5.

2310 U.S. Department of State, "Kazakhstan (Tier 2)," in Trafficking in Persons Report – 2006, Washington, DC, June 5, 2006; available from http://www.state.gov/g/tip/rls/tiprpt/2006/.

2311 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2006: Kazakhstan," Section 5.

2312 ILO-IPEC, CAR Capacity Building Regional Program on the Worst Forms of Child Labour, technical progress Report, Geneva, August 31, 2006, 2.

2313 U.S. Department of State, "Trafficking in Persons Report – 2006: Kazakhstan." See also U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2006: Kazakhstan," Section 5.

2314 IOM, Combating Trafficking in Persons in Central Asia: Prevention, Prosecution, Protection (ASPPP), accessed October 22, 2006; available from http://www.iom.int/iomwebsite/Project/ServletSearchProject?Category=1%3BCounter-Trafficking&region=0%3B%28any%29&title=&keyWord=&resultPerPage=25&event=search&search=Search. See also IOM, Prevention of Trafficking in Persons and Protection (PTPP) of Victims of Trafficking From, To, Through and Within Kazakhstan, accessed October 22, 2006; available from http://www.iom.int/iomwebsite/Project/ServletSearchProject&Category=1%3BCounter-Trafficking&region=0%3B%28any%29&country=0%3B%28any%29&title=&keyWord=&resultPerPage=25&event =search&search=Search.

2315 U.S. Department of State, "Trafficking in Persons Report – 2006: Kazakhstan."

2316 U.S. Department of State, "Country Reports – 2006: Kazakhstan," Section 5.

2317 Ibid.

2318 ILO-IPEC, CAR Capacity Building Project, project document, vii. 231

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