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Southeast Asian Nations: Supporting ASEAN and ASEAN Member States to Combat Human Trafficking

ASEAN-Australia Counter-Trafficking


ASEAN-Australia Counter-Trafficking (ASEAN-ACT) works with government and non-government organizations in ASEAN member states to enhance their capacity to ensure the just punishment of human traffickers while protecting and supporting the rights of victims.


ASEAN-ACT works through three interrelated pathways:

1. Enhancing regional-level capacity

ASEAN-ACT supports and works with ASEAN to strengthen its planning, monitoring, and reporting of the ASEAN Convention Against Trafficking in Persons (ACTIP), particularly with respect to the protection of victims.

2. Enhancing national-level capacity

ASEAN-ACT supports and works with national justice agencies to develop their capacity to fulfill their ACTIP obligations, in particular those that uphold victim rights and advance gender equality, disability, and social inclusion.

3. Developing inclusive public policy and dialogue

ASEAN-ACT promotes and facilitates dialogue between government, civil society, and the private sector to ensure a broad and diverse range of voices, including victims/survivors contribute to counter-trafficking law, policy, and practice.

Goals and Results

Justice outcomes

  • Strengthened justice sector agencies’ responses to counter human trafficking, including training 2,483 state and non-state in 2022, of whom 53% are women.
  • Informed development of policies and procedures to reduce vulnerability to trafficking in persons.
  • Coordinated transnational meetings to strengthen cross-border cooperation for trafficking in persons investigations and interventions.

Victim rights, equality, and inclusion outcomes

  • Facilitated victim-sensitive training for judges and prosecutors and supported government agencies with the inclusion of gender equality and victim rights in national action plans and in guidelines.
  • Collected trafficking-in-persons datasets and developed victim-sensitive court indicators to strengthen data collection and promote evidence-based policy.
  • Supported a study examining shelter practices and the freedom of movement for victims or presumed victims of trafficking, and offered recommendations for law, policy, and practice to ASEAN member states.

Knowledge sharing and learning outcomes

  • Series of webinars on justice system adaptive responses for ASEAN policymakers and practitioners, with topics ranging from victim compensation to women as change agents in the counter-trafficking sector.
  • Commissioned studies to enhance understanding of counter-trafficking issues, including examining the political economy of trafficking, application of the non-punishment principle in ASEAN and trafficking in the fisheries sector.


2018 - 2023
Implemented by
DT Global Asia Pacific
Technical Areas
Sub-Technical Areas
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