Economist, Professor William Baah-Boateng, has charged policymakers to move away from job creation to employment generation.
Using job creation as a term for temporary employment over a very short period, he noted that if policymakers continue to use ‘gigs’ to address the unemployment situation in the country, they would inadvertently create even more unemployment.
Speaking on JoyNews’ PM Express Business Edition, he said, “Yes, you’ve created that amount of job that is fine, but if you’ve created that amount of job and it’s not sustainable – it takes just a week for that job [to be done], the person will come back to ask for more.
“And that is why your unemployment rate will continue to rise because you’ve created a job for a person and that job lasted for only one month or only a week. So after that the person joins the unemployed.”
He noted that to get a clearer picture of the employment situation in the country, he advised that policymakers pay critical attention to those exiting the job market.
“When you want to talk about employment generation or you want to equate it as job creation in terms of numbers you need to look at the exit, those who are exiting, to be able to get the net. So you’re here, business desk, let’s say you have five people employed and then three leaves.
“Three of them they leave so you’re left with two and then your employers bring two so you’re four and you say ‘oh we have created jobs for two people’ that it cannot be because three people have left and replaced them by two. So if anything at all there is negative employment creation,” he said.
According to Prof. Baah-Boateng, to achieve sustainable employment policymakers would have to create jobs that can keep a person employed for at least half a year.
“So policymakers should move away from what they call job creation to employment generation. And that employment generation here we’re talking about employing somebody sustainably, and that kind of employment can last for at least six months,” he said.
His comments come on the back of the Ghana Statistical Service’s Quarterly Labour Statistics Report which revealed that about 1.76 million persons were unemployed in the third quarter of 2022.
Within this population, two out of every three unemployed persons were females.
Across the three quarters, about 157,000 persons experienced an unemployment spell that is they were unemployed in all the quarters.
The report further said close to 7.5 million persons remained employed throughout the three quarters out of the about 11 million persons employed in each quarter.
This indicates that across the three quarters about 3.5 million persons were moving in and out of employment depicting vulnerabilities.
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