Ignatius Baffour-Awuah

The Minister of Employment and Labour Relations, Ignatius Baffour Awuah says a sum of 2,849 jobs have been restored as a result of government’s intervention through easing restrictions.

According to him, the number represents 24 percent of some 11,657 job losses in the country as a result of Covid-19.

Under the Ministry’s press briefing on Wednesday, September 16,2020, Mr Awuah said the incidence of job losses was highest among micro-sized enterprises, representing 36 percent of the total number and lowest in large scale establishments, which represents 23 percent.

In the economic sector, the Minister revealed that the highest incidence of job losses (65 percent), was recorded in the other services like recruitment agencies, media and laundry services.

This was followed by 49 percent recorded job losses in construction, 45 percent in hotels and restaurants and 43 percent in private sector education.

The shipping or maritime sub-sector, together with finance, agriculture, health, and social work suffered the least incidence of job losses, a total of one percent only.

The Employment Minister also said the figures were results from a Pilot Labour Market Survey commissioned by the Ministry to assess the impact of COVID-19 on job losses and pay cuts.

The survey covered 878 enterprises across the country and involved a total of 44,040 employees consisting of micro (1-4 employees), small (5-29 employees), medium (30-99 employees), and large (100 above employees) enterprises.

Per the results of the survey, 17,685 out of 44,040 (40 percent) workers suffered pay cuts.

These pay cuts were reportedly highest among medium scale establishments, affecting 46 percent of workers, and lowest among small scale enterprises, affecting 38 percent of them.

Mr. Awuah further added that over 50 percent of workers in the construction and services sectors suffered pay cuts, and between 29-42 percent of workers in manufacturing, entertainment and events, sports, hotels and restaurants as well as mining also suffered pay cuts.

The survey showed that pay cuts were lowest in the finance sub sector (five percent), followed by shipping or maritime which recorded 18.9 per cent pay cuts.

Addressing establishments that adopted pay-cut strategies to keep workers on payroll, the survey suggested that 21 percent of these establishments reduced wages by 10 percent or less to involve some 3,870 workers.

The Minister also said 37 percent of establishments reduced wages by 10-30 percent whiles 29 percent of them reduced wages by 30-50 percent .

The pay-cuts, according to him, affected 11,833 workers, stressing that 1,982 workers from about 13 percent of the establishments reduced workers’ earnings by more than 50 percent.