GTZ-ILO-WHO-Consortium on Social Health Protection in Developing Countries

About us

In November 2004 GTZ, ILO and WHO signed a joint letter of agreement on cooperation in the field of social protection in health, sustainable health financing systems and efficient contracting to form the Consortium.

The Consortium is a joint effort to enhance the coordination of the work of the member organizations and to improve effective collaboration at country, regional and global levels. The enhanced cooperation at headquarters, regional and country level, benefits the countries with whom the Organizations engage in technical cooperation, as partner countries will be offered technical support based on a consensus and aligned strategies.


The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) GmbH is an international cooperation enterprise for sustainable development with worldwide operations. It provides viable, forwardlooking solutions for political, economic, ecological and social development in a globalised world. Working under difficult conditions, GTZ promotes complex reforms and change processes. Its corporate objective is to improve people’s living conditions on a sustainable basis.

GTZ is a German federal enterprise founded in 1975 as a company under private law. The German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) is its major client. The company also operates on behalf of other German ministries, partner-country governments and international clients, such as the European Commission, the United Nations or the World Bank as well as on behalf of private enterprises. GTZ works on a public-benefit basis. Any surpluses generated are channelled back into its own international cooperation projects for sustainable development. The Division of Health, Education and Social Protection is a WHO Collaborating Centre for Health Systems Development.

GTZ employs some 10,000 staff in more than 120 countries of Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Eastern European countries in transition and the New Independent States (NIS). Around 9,000 of these staff are national personnel. GTZ maintains its own offices in 67 countries. Some 970 people are employed at Head Office in Eschborn near Frankfurt am Main. In addition, 365 staff work for supraregional projects based at various locations within Germany.


The International Labour Organization (ILO) is the UN specialized agency which seeks the promotion of social justice and internationally recognized human and labour rights. Within the UN system, the ILO has a unique tripartite structure with workers and employers participating as equal partners with governments in the work of its governing organs.

The ILO has four principal strategic objectives: (i) to promote and realize standards, and fundamental principles and rights at work; (ii) to create greater opportunities for women and men to secure decent employment; (iii) to enhance the coverage and effectiveness of social protection for all and (iv) to strengthen tripartism and social dialogue.

The ILO elaborates international policies and programmes aiming at promoting the fundamental human rights, improving living and working conditions and increasing the possibilities of employment. The ILO also formulates international labour standards that are expected to direct national actions and whose application is controlled by a unique system of its kind. Further, the organization implements a vast programme of international technical cooperation and assistance that is formed and realized through partnerships with its constituents.

The ILO has launched the Global Campaign on Social Security and Coverage for All. Through various activities the Campaign aims at extending social protection to the excluded, particularly to those who are excluded from social protection in health.

The World Health Organization is the United Nations specialized agency for health. It was established on 7 April 1948. WHO’s objective, as set out in its Constitution, is the attainment by all peoples of the highest possible level of health. Health is defined in WHO’s Constitution as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. WHO is governed by the World Health Assembly, which is its plenary intergovernmental organ. The Health Assembly is composed of representatives from WHO’s 193 Member States.

Within the World Health Organization, the mission of the Department of Health System Financing is to work with countries to foster the development of equitable efficient and sustainable health financing systems. This will be achieved through policy support to countries, the development of tools and information to feed into the policy process, and appropriate capacity development.