HA NOI (VNS)— The northwestern region should implement long-term and sustainable measures to foster vocational training and job creation, said Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc at a meeting of the Northwestern Steering Committee and the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs yesterday in Ha Noi.
Although the rate of poor households in the region fell to 21.5 per cent last year – a 3 per cent-decrease from 2012 – many districts still have populations where more than half the residents live below the poverty line.
Deputy Minister of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs Nguyen Trong Dam said the increasing number of vocational training centres in the northwestern region had begun to meet the demand of rural labourers and ethnic minority groups.
In 2013, nearly 120,000 enrolled in vocational training courses in the region.
In addition, approximately 160,000 jobs were created for local residents, more than 10 per cent of new jobs nationwide. The region's unemployment rate in 2013 was 2.09 per cent.
Local authorities paid special attention to labour export, which resulted in more than 10,000 labourers going to work abroad last year.
However, participants also noted that drug addiction and the spread of HIV/AIDS remained major issues in the northwest. By the end of 2013, there were more than 48,000 drug addicts, accounting for 26.5 per cent of the national total. The percentage of people living with HIV/AIDS in the region is double the nationwide rate.
Deputy PM Phuc asked relevant authorities to focus on building a poverty reduction project and implement the microfinance model on a broader scale. — VNS