Contribution to the Cotton Reform Multi-Donors Trust Fund of the World Bank in Uzbekistan

Project completed

The World Bank led multi-donor trust fund will contribute to a sustainable cotton reform by thoroughly monitoring child and forced labour during cotton harvest, building the capacities of relevant authorities in terms of international standards and legislaion, raising awareness of the population and the stakeholders' groups involved in cotton picking. This will feed into policy dialogue with the Government and eventually eradicate this harmful practice for the rural population.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Agriculture & food security
Human rights

Agricultural policy
Human rights (incl. Women's rights)
Agricultural development
Public sector policy
01.09.2015 - 30.09.2021
CHF  1’215’000

Cotton is still the main crop in Uzbekistan and produced according to quotas set by the State. In order to fulfil these quotas, farmers are accepting additional workers who are sent by force by the government from ministries, schools, hospitals and private enterprises to increase the labour force. Child labour is now legally forbidden and in practice has been drastically reduced. WB and ADB have been approached by international civil society organisations asking for a stricter monitoring of these issues in their projects and for more action to promote international standards and prevent human rights violations.


The Multi Donor Trust Fund (MTDF) will support activities leading to socially, environmentally, and economically sustainable production of cotton in Uzbekistan, including with respect to child and forced labour practices.

Target groups
  • Ministry of Agriculture and Water Resources (MAWR)
  • Ministry of Labour and Social Issues
  • Farmers and farmers associations
  • Hokimyats (local authorities)
Medium-term outcomes
  • The capacity of farmers, local authorities, and trading firms for socially, environmentally, and financially sustainable cotton production as measured by the norms of the Better Cotton Initiative is improved
  • No systematic practices of child and forced labour, and increased sensitivity to the issues of child and forced labour in the areas covered by the existing WB-financed projects
  • Awareness is raised in specific areas on legal and policy requirements with respect to child and forced labour and access to domestic feed-back mechanisms
Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Swiss cooperation with Eastern Europe
Project partners Contract partner
International Financial Institution (IFI)
  • Other WB

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    1’215’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    1’215’000
Project phases

Phase 1 01.09.2015 - 30.09.2021   (Completed)