Growing Together, Reducing Unemployment
The following is the Minister for Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations Jone Usamate’s introductory remarks at the Employers Forum in Savusavu yesterday.
Employers, distinguished guests, training providers, Government reps, FNPF and FRCA – our stakeholder partners in today’s Forum, bula vinaka and greetings everyone.
This Employer Forum is special to us.
We have the opportunity to dialogue on the human resource development and utilisation needs of our nation.
This Forum provides an opportunity to add-value to the huge national challenge to reduce the unemployment and provide relevant training and employment opportunities to our people.
The Fijian Government acknowledges the contribution you have made in the active participation of Fiji’s labour force and the positive contribution to Fiji’s economic growth.
The Fijian economy has experienced continual annual growth over the last decade and we need to continue building on this momentum.
We all have different roles to play to continue this momentum. At the same time, while we enjoying positive growth, we should also be mindful of the sharing of benefits to these growth across our nation.
As you aware, Fiji still has a broad-base population, thus a young population. Annually, we have primary and secondary school leavers entering higher education or the labour market looking for employment. Annually, we have those that cannot find jobs and join the pool of unemployment.
Since 2010, the National Employment Centre (NEC) was established under the NEC Decree of 2009 to target the unemployed. The NEC have registered unemployed clients looking for employment opportunities and happy to mention that the NEC Database is currently being updated.
We will provide you later this afternoon some recent statistics about the NEC update.
From the next Government financial year, we are hoping to provide timely and accurate information on unemployment figures and clients that are registered at the NEC.
My Ministry will play a proactive role in reducing the unemployment rate and such consultation forums with the employers, training providers and other relevant Government institutions will assist to discuss such national labour market challenges and streamline strategies relevant way forward to upskill and build the capacity of our people for the labour market.
The forum has also been organised for the Western and Northern Division in the upcoming weeks.
I look forward to a positive feedback and commitment towards providing more and better opportunities in our labour market.