|Unemployed labourers look for work at a jobs fair in HCM City's Binh Thanh District. A new report by the International Labour Organisation shows that the unemployment rate among young people in Viet Nam is more than three times the adult rate.—VNA/VNS Photo Phuong Vy
HA NOI (VNS)— The unemployment rate among young people in Viet Nam is more than three times the adult rate, according to a report published in Geneva, Switzerland on Wednesday by the International Labour Organisation (ILO).
Amid a range of damning statistics, it revealed that nearly half the country's unemployed last year were aged 15-24.
"The economic crunch has unfortunately hit the most dynamic generation of workers the hardest," said ILO Viet Nam Director Gyorgy Sziraczki.
But youth unemployment is only the tip of the iceberg. Four million (over 53 per cent) of young workers are in vulnerable employment. This means they are either self-employed or serve as contributing family workers, which are typically low-productivity jobs with meager income, poor working conditions and lack of social protection.
The ongoing reforms of the education and training system is key to tapping the talent, energy and creativity of young women and men, thus supporting a dynamic development process.
"A national vocational and technical education system that promotes the working ability of youth and meets the present and future needs of businesses is essential to productivity growth, increased competitiveness and job creation," said Sziraczki.
Unlocking the potential of small and medium-sized enterprises by cutting red tape and providing finance and business support services is another way to promote productive job opportunities for young people.
According to Matthieu Cognac, ILO Asia-Pacific Youth Employment Specialist, attention should also be directed to rural areas where the majority of young people live and work.
"Employment counselling, entrepreneurship courses and business mentoring could help many young people to start and grow their own business," he said.
The Ministry of Education and Training has decided to integrate the ILO business training package into the national secondary education curriculum, which will be revised in 2015.
The package "Know About Business", a training methodology for trainers and teachers to create awareness about entrepreneurship among young people, has been used in 50 countries worldwide.
ILO Viet Nam director Sziraczki said, "Young people deserve a better start and equal treatment, otherwise Viet Nam would lose huge contributions to its socio-economic development."
The global youth unemployment rate is projected to reach almost 13 per cent in 2013 – the equivalent of 73 million young people, according to the report. — VNS