Guinea-Bissau - Labor

The labor force numbered 480,000 in 2002. Approximately 82% of workers engaged in agricultural activity. Primarily this consists of subsistence farming.

The constitution grants workers the freedom to join and form trade unions, however this affects a very small percentage of the population. Few workers outside of the public sector are organized. There were 11 registered labor unions in 2002. Workers are allowed to strike provided that they have given notice of their intention to do so. Collective bargaining is permitted but in practice does not occur.

Minimum wages are established but are not regularly enforced. The lowest legal monthly wage in 2002 was $20, and this did not support a family. The minimum age for employment is 14 years but this is not enforced outside of the small formal economy. Many children work as street vendors or on farms in rural communities. Health and safety standards set by the government are not regularly enforced.

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