Khamed-Lunana MP Yeshey Dem questioned the Labor Minister Lyonpo Ugyen Dorji about issues, plans and strategies to address the youth unemployment issue.
She said that according to the Labour force survey report, released on May 25 by the National Statistics Bureau, the national youth unemployment rate stands at 15.7% which has increased by 3.4% from 2017.
“This is an issue of national concern and for that, what is the government and ministry in particular doing to address the issue, and what plans and strategies are put in place,” asked the MP.
Labor Minister stated that ‘’The question which you have asked me is related to the National statistics bureau report which stated that in 2017 youth unemployment rate was 12.3% but the youth unemployment rate has increased by 3.4% and this increasing no is worrisome.
If I explain in brief, we must find out the accurate figure of unemployed youths instead of mere percentage since it’s important.”
He said that 12.3% in figures according to 2017 is 6,026 unemployed youths whereas according to the 2018 report it is 15.7% but in actual figures its only 4921 unemployed but he said that in percentage terms it seems like it has increased drastically.
“So you all think, if it has increased to this much in a year’s time than in 5 years time it will increase drastically, therefore; shock and worry is there but if you look at the actual figures than it seems like it has been decreased by around 1000 in a year and so all the parents and concerned parliamentarians should not worry as the percentage cannot bring out the actual figure,” said Lyonpo.
Lyonpo, however said that if one asks if the unemployment issue has decreased than even this may not be true because in the past the problem was big and so this issue will remain for a long time,.
He said the most important thing is to recognize there is a problem and understand that there is huge support being rendered from the government’s side to solve this since the future of the nation’s sovereignty, GNH and wealth lies solely in the hands of the youths.
Lyonpo said that as already mentioned in the 12th five-year plan, what the government will do differently is to start an employment responsibility system program soon in cooperation with various government agencies and sectors.
He said that earlier, the role to give employment to the youth was the duty of only ministry of labor and human resources but now these government agencies and sectors will be held responsible for creating a certain number of jobs.
Secondly, for the fresh graduates, the government is thinking of providing jobs through National Service Program which will help those individuals to develop working experience, acquire skills and to give them exposure to rural areas.
“As for class ten and twelve graduates, with our financial support, we will provide jobs in tourism industries, agriculture, carpentry and various other areas as there are around 6000 vacant slots in such areas through Youth Engagement Livelihood Program for one year,” said Lyonpo.
“On top of that, we will also continue with overseas employment in places where it is possible and safe. Just because some problems arises in some places does not mean we will stop the rest from ruining their chances so we will continue to send them,” added Lyonpo.
The minister said that to get a job, the most important thing the youth needs is skills and experience and so to enhance that, the government is willing to spend on technical and vocational education programs keeping in mind that it might benefit the youths.
He said providing just these skills are also not enough and so they need to create their own jobs and to start business related jobs and the government programs will be in this line.