The global economy will need to generate around 600 million jobs over a 15-year period just to keep employment rates constant, the World Bank said in a report titled the World Development Report, or WDR, 2013, released on Monday.
In the report, WDR Director Martin Rama said more than 620 million young people are neither working nor studying. "Just to keep employment rates constant, the worldwide number of jobs will have to increase by around 600 million over a 15-year period."
More specifically, there should be around 600 million more jobs in 2020 than in 2005, a majority of them in Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa, the report noted.
"It's critical that governments work well with the private sector, which accounts for 90 percent of all jobs," World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim said. "Therefore, we need to find the best ways to help small firms and farms grow."
The quality of jobs is equally important as the number of jobs, the report said while proposing a three-stage approach to help governments achieve these objectives.
The WDR estimates that worldwide, more than 3 billion people are working, but nearly half work in farming, small household enterprises, or in casual or seasonal day labor, where safety nets are modest or sometimes non-existent and earnings are often meager.
The report said that nations should ensure that solid fundamentals, including macroeconomic stability, an enabling business environment, human capital, and the rule of law, are in place.
Labor policies should not become an obstacle to job creation and they should also provide access to voice and social protection to the most vulnerable.
The report urged governments to identify which jobs would do the most for development given their specific country context, and remove or offset obstacles to private sector creation of such jobs.
The report pointed out that rapid urbanization is changing the composition of employment. More than half the population in developing countries is expected to be living in cities and towns before 2020.
As a result, the growth of the non-agricultural labor force will vastly exceed the growth of the agricultural labor force, it said.
by RTT Staff Writer
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