Labor Minister: Economic Modernization Vision Targets One Million Jobs in 10 Years

Minister of Industry, Trade and Supply, and Labor, Youssef Shamali, has shed light on the government’s ambitious plan that targets harnessing a million young energies into the workforce over the next decade. This dynamic strategy, part of an economic modernization vision launched last year, sets its sights on a 3 percent average annual per capita income increase, with an aspiration to raise the satisfaction quotient amongst Jordanians with their quality of life to a whopping 80 percent. Speaking at the 111th session of the International Labor Conference in Geneva, themed ‘Just Transition to a Sustainable Economy,’ Shamali emphasized that the plan views the workforce as both a foundation and a goal for economic and social progression. The vision is underpinned by initiatives focused on capacity building, cultivating leadership and innovation, and magnetizing investments. Shamali underscored the initiative’s commitment to preparing businesses for a sustainable future, integrating elements such as green manufacturing, energy efficiency, and strategies for reducing production and recycling costs. The conference discusses key themes including sustainable and inclusive economies, high-quality training, and worker protection – issues that have come into sharp focus amid the economic challenges brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic and the fallout of global conflicts and climate change. Shamali shared Jordan’s continuous efforts in meeting these challenges, working towards a comprehensive and sustainable economy. Jordan’s efforts have been focused on leveraging societal and sectorial potential, utilizing resources sustainably, developing conducive infrastructure and legislation, attracting investment, and forging regional and global partnerships to bolster the national economy. ‘Sustainability is vital to the Kingdom’s future economy. The key to achieving this lies in empowering a skilled workforce that is confident in their role and rights,’ Shamali stated. Accordingly, the programs of institutions focused on training and capacity building have been directed to include sustainability practices. Jordan has been taking strides in enhancing worker protection. The National Employment Program was launched with an aim to stimulate the private sector to create more jobs for Jordanians and curb unemployment exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic. So far, the program has attracted about 1,000 enterprises. The government also supported private institutions in retaining their employees during the pandemic peak. The Labor Law has been revamped to establish a more flexible rapport between employers and employees and to foster a safe work environment for women. The revisions have abolished restrictions on women’s work, allowing them the freedom to choose their career and work timings, thereby eliminating gender-based discrimination. Further, the law has been tailored to cater to a conducive work environment for workers with disabilities and those undertaking night shifts. It also maintains a focus on workplace safety, health conditions, and effective resolution of labor complaints. Lastly, Shamali pointed out that the economic modernization vision also intersects with the investment environment law, seeking to expand sustainable employment through local and foreign investments in diverse industrial and service sectors. ‘We’ve been keen to adopt a collaborative approach with the private sector and worker representatives to ensure sustainable consensus,’ Shamali concluded.

Source: Jordan News Agency