June 6th, 2006 12:22 EST
Some 430 Million New Jobs Will Be Required Over The Next Decade
Some 430 million new jobs will be required over the next decade to keep pace with a growing labour force, mostly in developing countries, through policies replacing jobless with “job-rich” growth, according to the head of the United Nations labour agency.
“The global economy is not delivering enough decent jobs that people need,” International Labour Organization (ILO) Director-General Juan Somavia <"http://www.ilo.org/public/english/bureau/inf/pr/2006/26.htm">told the Agency’s annual <"http://www.ilo.org/public/english/bureau/inf/event/ilc2006/index.htm">conference in Geneva yesterday.
“Despite the many benefits of globalization, we see again and again how the dignity of work has been devalued. Economic optimism for some is matched with profound social pessimism for many. This is why we must put in place policies that replace jobless growth with quality, 'job-rich' growth,” he added, noting that 80 per cent of the world’s work force live in developing countries.
“That job creation challenge comes on top of the pressure of a continuing large-scale shift out of agriculture and rural areas towards cities, pushed by poverty and pulled by the hope of a better job, he told more than 4,000 delegates representing governments, workers and employers from ILO member States as the meeting entered its second week.
The conference is to focus on a wide range of issues, including changing patterns in the world of work, child labour, occupational safety and health, the employment relationship, labour inspection and a review of labour standards in a number of countries.
Mr. Somavia cited the service economy as a “major growth area for employment,” linking it to “another virtually global phenomenon - skill shortages side-by-side with rising unemployment.”
“The hardware of the new technologies is spreading much faster than the human software of manager and worker skills to make full use of its potential,” he said.
Among other challenges facing the global economy is the need to come to terms with an ageing population, discrimination, migration and the fact that six out of 10 workers in the world lack social protection.
Mr. Somavia cited the final outcome statement of the UN World Summit in September 2005, in which 150 leaders agreed to place full and productive employment and decent work as a central objective of relevant national and international policies. This “marked an unprecedented leap in global recognition at the highest political level of the relevance and centrality of the ILO's decent work agenda for the entire international community,” he said.
“We can mainstream these issues within the UN system,” he told the delegates.
For more details go to UN News Centre at http://www.un.org/news
Source: The UN