Washington: India, Bangladesh and the Philippines lead the world in the number of products made by child workers, a US government stock-taking of the global scale of under aged labour has revealed.

Some 130 types of goods -from building bricks and soccer balls to pornography and rare ores used in cellphones- involve child labour in 71 countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America, the Department of Labour said.

"We believe that we all have God-given potential and every child should be given the right to fulfill their dreams," said Labour Secretary Hilda Solis at the release of the 10th annual "Findings on the Worst Forms of Child Labour" on Monday.

Focusing this year on hazardous work performed by children, and relying in good part on International Labour Organization (ILO) data, the report examines efforts by more than 140 countries to address the worst forms of child labour.

The ILO estimates that more than 215 million children are involved in child labour.

One-third of countries have yet to define hazardous kinds of work prohibited to children, it said. Some nations have no minimum age for such work, and still more lack the means to monitor and enforce bans on dangerous child labour.

A rundown of goods produced by child labour, issued alongside the report, underlined the degree to which youngsters in developing nations are forced to work, rather than go to school, for little if any wages.

India topped the list, with its children being used to make no fewer than 20 products, including bidis, bricks, fireworks, footwear, glass bangles, incense, locks, matches, rice, silk fabric and thread, and soccer balls.

India also led a separate list of products made by forced or indentured child labour -- seven types of goods in all including carpets, embroidered textiles and garments.

In Bangladesh, children produced 14 kinds of goods, many of them of an industrial nature, such as bricks, footwear, steel furniture, leather, matches, and textiles including jute.

In the Philippines, children took part in the production of bananas, coconuts, corn, fashion accessories, gold, hogs, pornography, pyrotechnics, rice, rubber, sugarcane and tobacco.

The Department of Labour on Monday announced a USD 15 million grant to the World Vision charity "to address the worst forms of child labour in sugarcane production" in the Philippines.

Sandra Polaski, deputy undersecretary for international affairs at the Department of Labour, said that India's place atop the child-labour table reflected its billion-plus population, and not neglect of the issue.

"India is one of the two largest countries in the world, and so the larger the country, if there is significant poverty, you would expect to see more" child labour, she said.

"The Indian government is the first to say they have to find more ambitious ways" of tackling the problem, she said, adding that New Delhi took a big step in 2010 when elementary education was made compulsory across the country.

(Agencies)