World Trafficking in persons

Factbook > Countries > World > Transnational Issues

Trafficking in persons: current situation: approximately 800,000 people, mostly women and children, are trafficked annually across national borders, not including the millions who are trafficked within their own countries; at least 80% of the victims are female and up to 50% are minors; 75% of all victims are trafficked into commercial sexual exploitation; almost two-thirds of the global victims are trafficked intra-regionally within East Asia and the Pacific (260,000 to 280,000 people) and Europe and Eurasia (170,000 to 210,000 people) (2012)
Tier 2 Watch List: (44 countries) Afghanistan, Albania, Angola, Bahrain, Barbados, Belarus, Burma, Burundi, Cambodia, Chad, Comoros, Djibouti, Federated States of Micronesia, The Gambia, Guinea, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Kenya, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Marshall Islands, Morocco, Namibia, Rwanda, Saint Lucia, Seychelles, Solomon Islands, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Tanzania, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uruguay, Venezuela
Tier 3: (21 countries) Algeria, Central African Republic, China, Democratic Republic of Congo, Cuba, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Guinea-Bissau, Iran, North Korea, Kuwait, Libya, Mauritania, Papua New Guinea, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Syria, Uzbekistan, Yemen, Zimbabwe (2013)

Definition: Trafficking in persons is modern-day slavery, involving victims who are forced, defrauded, or coerced into labor or sexual exploitation. The International Labor Organization (ILO), the UN agency charged with addressing labor standards, employment, and social protection issues, estimates that 12.3 million people worldwide are enslaved in forced labor, bonded labor, forced child labor, sexual servitude, and involuntary servitude at any given time. Human trafficking is a multi-dimensional threat, depriving people of their human rights and freedoms, risking global health, promoting social breakdown, inhibiting development by depriving countries of their human capital, and helping fuel the growth of organized crime. In 2000, the US Congress passed the Trafficking Victims Protection Act (TVPA), reauthorized in 2003 and 2005, which provides tools for the US to combat trafficking in persons, both domestically and abroad. One of the law�s key components is the creation of the US Department of State�s annual Trafficking in Persons Report, which assesses the government response (i.e., the current situation) in some 150 countries with a significant number of victims trafficked across their borders who are recruited, harbored, transported, provided, or obtained for forced labor or sexual exploitation.
Countries in the annual report are rated in three tiers, based on government efforts to combat trafficking. The countries identified in this entry are those listed in the 2006 Trafficking in Persons Report as Tier 2 Watch List or Tier 3 based on the following tier rating definitions:


Tier 2 Watch List countries do not fully comply with the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking but are making significant efforts to do so, and meet one of the following criteria:

1. they display a high or significantly increasing numbof victims,

2. they have failed to provide evidence of increasing efforts to combat trafficking in persons, or,

3. they have committed to take action over the next year.


Tier 3 countries neither satisfy the minimum standards for the elimination of trafficking nor demonstrate a significant effort to do so. Countries in this tier are subject to potential non-humanitarian and non-trade sanctions.

Source: CIA World Factbook - Unless otherwise noted, information in this page is accurate as of December 6, 2013

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