In 2003, the United Nations ruled that human trafficking was a crime. More than 100 countries signed the protocol and many introduced anti-trafficking legislation. However, human traffickers continue to operate, and this continues to be a big problem.
| Beate Andrees and Nick Grono on human trafficking
In 2005, according to the International Labour Organisation, there were at least 2.4 million trafficked people at any given time in the world. Today, 21 million is the latest estimate.
In 2005, the profit was about $32bn a year, today it is at $150bn profit a year.
The problem is particularly bad in the Asia Pacific, where there are around 3.5 million vulnerable refugees. Four years ago, 32 countries in the region signed a framework agreement to try to curb the problem.
But in southern Thailand, they are not waiting around for results. Some locals have taken matters into their own hands, arming themselves to stop their communities from descending into lawlessness. Al Jazeera's Marga Ortigas reports from Thailand.
To discuss the issues behind forced labour and human trafficking, Counting the Cost is joined by Beate Andrees from the ILO in Geneva; and Nick Grono, the CEO of The Freedom Fund.
Source: Al Jazeera