In light of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB)’s recent report commending the decrease in Guyana’s unemployment rate, Minister of Labour, Joseph Hamilton has said that these reports reflect the hard work that the government is putting into implementing policies that enhance livelihoods.
He said that the country’s labour sector has seen tremendous upgrades to revolutionise the way unemployment is tackled, and this approach is yielding results.
In its report, Global and Regional Economies at a Crossroads, the IDB stated that Guyana’s unemployment rates have been on a steady decline since 2021.
He added that the report serves to silence the naysayers who attempt to paint a negative picture of Guyana’s labour sector.
“What this speaks to is the policies of this PPP/C government working. So, from the report and its findings, people should recognise that we could not be where we are commended by the IDB and other organisations, if, from 2020, the policies that our government has enacted and the measures we have put in place for the citizens. What is important is the fact that they spoke to unemployment decreasing. We have spoken to this multiple times,” he said.
The Minister pointed out that there are vacancies abound in many sectors, and yet many persons lament that they are unable to find jobs, and this discord has fuelled the arguments of many naysayers.
“It is not that jobs are scarce. It is because many persons might be looking for their ‘dream’ job or a job in a specific discipline that they study. I often say that it is important to find a job until you find your dream job. It is important that you are employed,” he said.
He added that the part-time jobs initiative works in tandem with the Board of Industrial Training (BIT) to prepare persons for full-time employment.
“Our hope is that while people have a part-time job and they are able to earn some money, they are making use of the training opportunities presented to them so that in the shortest possible time, they are able to become a full-time employee, where they can earn substantially more than they earn with the part-time,” he outlined.
BIT training has been instrumental in tackling unemployment rates, empowering Guyanese with the skills to secure jobs within a range of sectors, and serving as an engine to promote entrepreneurship.
Upon assuming office in 2020, it was discovered that BIT trained an average of 1,300-1,500 persons per year. Over 10,000 persons have been trained through BIT in the three years since.
“Skill areas that companies were finding it difficult to recruit staff in before, they are able to do that now. In other instances, they don’t have to go out of the region. They are able to find people with the requisite skills in their region to work,” the Minister relayed.
The Central Recruitment and Manpower Agency (CRMA) has also seen an elevation since 2020. The implementation of technology in its processes has brought ease in matching job seekers with relevant entities that have a need for their skill set.
“People don’t have to walk into the ministry and fill out a form. They sit in their homes and they can click on our job bank website, and put in their credentials. There are hundreds of employers that are registered on the job bank, so they can match skills with vacancies that they have in their company,” the Minister explained.
The recognition by an independent and credible entity such as the IDB speaks to the objectively beneficial impact that the government’s policies have on Guyana’s economy. Minister Hamilton said Guyanese across the country can look forward to enhanced livelihoods under the stewardship of the PPP/C government, as it continues to accomplish and exceed the promises outlined in the manifesto.