Can Pakistan Economy Add 2 Million Jobs a Year?

About 20 million Pakistanis are expected to enter the labor market over the next 10 years. Can Pakistani economy add jobs at a rate of 2 million a year for the next decade to absorb all new entrants to its work force? What is Pakistan's employment elasticity? How fast must it grow to create these jobs? How much investment is needed to achieve the required growth rate?

Pakistan Labor Market:

Pakistan's work force is about 68 million, according to the World Bank. Its labor force expansion is the 3rd biggest in the world after India's and Nigeria's, according to UN World Population Prospects 2017.  Pakistan's working age population in 15-64 years age bracket is expected to increase by 27.5 million people to 147.1 million in 10 years, according to Bloomberg News' analysis of data reported in UN World Population Prospects 2017.  Pakistan's increase of 27.5 million is the third largest after India's 115.9 million and Nigeria's 34.2 million increase in working age population of 15-64 years old. China's working age population in 15-64 years age group will decline by 21 million in the next 10 years.
Employment Elasticity:

Employment elasticity is a measure of the percentage of new jobs added in the economy for  each percentage point increase in GDP. Employment elasticity of 0.5 means that there is 0.5% growth in jobs for each 1% growth in GDP.

Analysis of the World Bank jobs data shows Pakistan's employment elasticity was about 0.70 in the period from 2000-2010. A little over 5% annual GDP growth enabled the economy to add jobs at a rate of 3.6% a year for the new entrants in the labor market. Since then, Pakistan's GDP growth rate has declined along with a decrease in employment elasticity to about 0.50, according to Asian Development Bank.  The ADB reports says: "With an employment elasticity of GDP growth estimated to be around 0.5, economic growth of at least 7% is required to provide sufficient jobs".

Source: World Bank Report "More and Better Jobs in South Asia"

Savings and Investments:

Rising working age population and growing workforce participation of both men and women in developing nations like Pakistan will boost domestic savings and investments, according to Global Development Horizons (GDH) report. Escaping the low savings low investment trap will help accelerate the lagging GDP growth rate in Pakistan, as will increased foreign investment such as the Chinese investment in China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. Increased savings and investments will not only enlarge the nation's tax base but also help create more jobs for the expected new entrants into the work force as it did in 2000-2010, according to a World Report titled "More and Better Jobs in South Asia".

Economic Growth Rate:

Historic data suggests that it takes investment of 4% of GDP to achieve 1% GDP growth, a capital to output ratio (COR) of 4, according to Pakistani economist Mohsin Chandna.  This COR ratio will require an investment of 28% of GDP to reach 7% economic growth necessary to create over 2 million jobs a year over the next decade.

Pakistan's current savings rate of around 13% will clearly not be sufficient to get to the goals of 28%. This gap will need to be filled by a combination of increased savings rate and substantial increase in foreign direct investment (FDI).

Rising working age population and growing workforce participation of both men and women in developing nations like Pakistan will significantly boost domestic savings and investment. Increased foreign direct investment such as Chinese investment in China-Pakistan Economic Corridor over the next several decades will help fill the gap between the national savings rate and investments required to reach 7% annual GDP growth to create over 2 million jobs a year.

Summary:

Pakistan needs to create over 2 million jobs over the next decade to absorb new workers entering the labor market. With an employment elasticity of 0.5, it will require 7% annual GDP growth. A combination of increased domestic savings and higher foreign investment flows will be needed for investment of 28% of GDP to achieve the required economic growth for sufficient job creation in the country over the next 10 years.

Here's a discussion on this and other subjects:

https://youtu.be/ucopTLFQdKY



Related Links:

Haq's Musings

Pakistan's Labor Force Expansion on Saving, Investments and GDP Growth

Pakistan's Population Growth: Blessing or Curse?

Pakistan's Expected Demographic Dividend

World Bank Report on Job Growth in Pakistan

Underinvestment Hurting Pakistan's GDP Growth

China-Pakistan Economic Corridor

Musharraf Accelerated Growth of Pakistan's Financial and Human Capital

Working Women Seeding a Silent Revolution in Pakistan


Comments

Riaz Haq said…
#India, #China unlikely to be ‘growth poles’ for global #economy: UNCTAD report | Business Line

http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/economy/policy/india-china-unlikely-to-be-growth-poles-for-global-economy-unctad-report/article9860055.ece


Effects of demonetisation and rollout of the Goods & Services Tax regime on the informal sector and reduction in pace of credit creation may affect India’s growth prospects and the country unlikely to serve as the “growth pole’’ for the global economy in the near future, a United Nations report has said.

“Growth in the world’s two most populous economies − China and India − remains relatively buoyant, but the pace is slower than before the crisis and face some serious downside risks,” according to the UNCTAD’s Trade & Development report 2017 released on Thursday.

The report titled ‘Beyond austerity — towards a global new deal’, further pointed out that it was absence of a robust recovery in developed countries and renewed volatility of global capital flows that have constrained economic growth in developing countries.

It noted that the world economy in 2017 was picking up but not lifting off. “Growth is expected to reach 2.6 per cent, slightly higher than in 2016 but well below the pre-financial crisis average of 3.2 per cent,” it said.

A combination of too much debt and too little demand at the global level has hampered sustained expansion of the world economy, the reported stated. Giving a prescription for makeover of the world economy, the report made a case for ending austerity, clamping down on corporate rent seeking and harnessing finance to support job creation and infrastructure investment.

India’s growth performance depends to a large extent on reforms to its banking sector, which is burdened with large volumes of stressed and non-performing assets, and there are already signs of a reduction in the pace of credit creation, the report said.

“Since debt-financed private investment and consumption have been important drivers of growth in India, the easing of the credit boom is likely to slow GDP growth,” it said.

In addition, the informal sector, which still accounts for at least one third of the country’s GDP and more than four fifths of employment, was badly affected by the government’s “demonetisation” move in November 2016, and it may be further affected by the rollout of the GST from July 2017, the report added.

“Thus, even if the current levels of growth in both China and India are sustained, it is unlikely that these countries will serve as growth poles for the global economy in the near future,” it concluded.

http://www.globaltrademag.com/global-trade-daily/unctad-releases-trade-development-report-2017
Riaz Haq said…
#India’s faltering economy poses questions for #Modi. #GDP growth 5.7% in Q1 FY18
#DeMonetization #GST https://www.ft.com/content/9dd3bff4-9871-11e7-a652-cde3f882dd7b … via @FT

Two years ago, India was indeed touted as a rare bright spot in a dim global economy. Its growth had outpaced that of a slowing China, and Mr Modi’s government briefly revelled in India’s status as the world’s fastest-growing large economy. Many expected India to enjoy a sustained economic boom. That hope was not realised. Since early 2016, Indian growth has slowed consistently. In the quarter ending June 30, gross domestic product growth fell to 5.7 per cent — its slowest since early 2014, the doldrums of the previous Congress government. July’s index of industrial production has also surprised economists, up just 1.2 per cent, with 15 of 23 industries contracting. New Delhi insists that the downturn is temporary — a wobble due to reforms such as the July 1 introduction of a national value added tax. But many economists suggest India is facing serious structural problems from which it is unlikely to recover rapidly. Companies and banks remained weighed down in high levels of stressed debt. Exports — which helped drive growth after Mr Modi took over — have faltered. Private investment has fallen steadily since early 2016 with little sign of imminent pick-up. “The reasons why corporates are not investing is because there is no demand,” says Jahangir Aziz, head of emerging markets analysis at JPMorgan. “India, like every other emerging market, is dependent on foreign demand to drive its growth. Foreign demand went down, and India did not replace it with an alternative.” Since taking power, Mr Modi’s economic vision has centred on boosting India’s appeal and competitiveness as a manufacturing base — to encourage more companies to “Make in India”. He vowed to revive long-stalled infrastructure projects, including those mired in unsustainable debt. He has talked of slashing red tape to improve the ease of doing business. His government has pushed through the new goods and services tax, which is turning the country into a genuine single market. Raghuram Rajan on India's economic slide Play video But in a world of excess global manufacturing capacity, some suggest that New Delhi’s focus on promoting India as an export-oriented manufacturing base may not deliver the expected results. “When global trade is languishing, it’s very difficult for India to stand up and say we are going to take market share away from China,” says Mr Aziz. “Everybody is fighting for a smaller and smaller pie.” It does not help that the rupee has also appreciated strongly, rising 6 per cent against the dollar this year, as relatively high interest rates compared with other markets attract capital inflows. Many economists argue the currency is overvalued — an argument so far dismissed by New Delhi. “Countries often make a mistake and take pride in the stronger currency, and that is a very risky thing,” says Kaushik Basu, who served as chief economic adviser to India’s previous Congress government. “The rupee in real terms has become strong and that is showing up in exports not doing well and imports picking up a bit too rapidly.”The introduction of India’s goods and services tax has undoubtedly damped short-term economic impact, as many manufacturers ran down their stocks amid uncertainty about how the government would give tax credits for goods made before July 1. “Everybody started reducing inventory levels,” says Gaurav Daga, whose business imports plastic polymers used to make goods ranging from shoes to cables to auto components. “Nobody had any clarity about the transition credits.” But many say India’s economy is also reeling from the aftershocks of last year’s radical demonetisation, when Mr Modi banned the use of nearly 86 per cent of the country’s cash, severely disrupting daily life and commerce. ’
Riaz Haq said…
2.43 million Pakistanis working in Europe

https://tribune.com.pk/story/1391730/overseas-workforce-2-43-million-pakistanis-working-europe/

Out of the total Pakistan’s overseas workforce, 27 per cent have jobs in European countries, revealed statistics shared by Ministry of Overseas Pakistanis and Human Resource Development with the lawmakers in the Senate.

After Saudi Arabia, United Kingdom caters to the largest overseas Pakistanis followed by Italy, France, Germany and Spain.

In response to question of senator Rozi Khan Kakar, the ministry stated that presently around 9.08 million workforce is living/working abroad, out of which, 2.43 million got job opportunities in around 25 countries of Europe.
UK at the moment has provided jobs to 1.7 million Pakistanis. Saudi Arabia continues to be the favourite destination of Pakistani workforce with 2.6 million workers. United Arab Emirates is at the fourth place in the list with 1.6 million and United States fifth with 900,350.

In Europe, Italy is providing jobs to 119,762 Pakistanis, France 104,000, Germany 90,556, Spain 82,000, Greece 70,002, Norway 38,000 and Netherlands 35,000.

Turkey is providing jobs to only 557 Pakistani workers while China has accommodated 14,355 Pakistani workers. Chile is providing jobs to 760 Pakistanis and Cuba has given job opportunities to 600 Pakistanis. Afghanistan provided jobs to 71,000 Pakistanis and India 10,000. Iran has provided jobs to 7,065 Pakistanis.

Currently, 120,216 Pakistanis have been provided jobs in Malaysia and 65,000 in Thailand.

Libya provided 12,008 Pakistanis jobs, Iraq accommodated 4,709 and Yemen 3,024. Russia gave jobs to 3,560 Pakistanis, stated the statistics.

The reply also contains that 19 Community Welfare Attaches are posted in Pakistan’s missions abroad in the countries having a sizeable concentration of Pakistanis to provide them certain facilities.

These facilities include, issuance of passports, provision of assistance in implementation of Foreign Service Agreement which is made between employee and employer and some others.
Riaz Haq said…
#Pakistan #cement sales up 11% in August 2017 to 3.8 million tons with capacity utilization at 96%. #CPEC

https://www.cemnet.com/News/story/162490/pakistan-cement-sales-up-11-in-august.html

Cement sales in Pakistan rose 10.9 per cent YoY in August 2017 to 3.766Mt from 3.585Mt in August 2016.

In the northern region, dispatches reached 2.731Mt, up from 2.495Mt in August 2016, while in the southern region dispatches rose from 0.532Mt to 0.625Mt during the same period.

Some 307,000t of cement was exported from the north, significantly less than 355,000t reported in August 2016. Exports from the south slipped from 203,000t to 103,000t.

Capacity utilisation in August surpassed the 96 per cent mark, according to the All Pakistan Cement Manufacturers’ Association.

In the first two months of this financial year, Pakistani cement plants delivered 7.148Mt, up 21 per cent YoY. Domestic consumption improved 28 per cent YoY, exports declined 13 per cent YoY.

Cement demand in the north increased by 28.5 per cent in the north and by 25.4 per cent in the south in July-August 2017. Exports in the north and south declined by 2.5 and 25.4 per cent, respectively during this period.
Riaz Haq said…
#Pakistan Auto sales up by 25% in Aug 2017. #CPEC

http://nation.com.pk/business/14-Sep-2017/auto-sales-up-by-25pc-in-aug

According to latest PAMA data, Pakistan local car assemblers, including LCVs, Vans and Jeeps, have sold 22,000 units in August 2017, an increase of 25 percent annually. These numbers are above the estimates. Experts attribute this increase to string of new models and facelift introduced recently propelling sales.

Sales of Honda (HCAR) have outperformed peers, posting 47 percent YoY growth. These are the highest monthly sales in history of the company at 4,666 units due to successful introduction of new Civic model and new SUV variant BR-V. Sales of Pak Suzuki Motor Company have increased by 32 percent YoY in August 2017 due to strong sales of Wagon-R, +75 percent YoY and new model of Cultus increased by 69 percent YoY. Mehran sales also rocketed +28 percent YoY supporting PSMC’s sales growth.

Indus Motors sold 5,541 units an uptick of 2 percent YoY. The company’s focus remained on production of higher margin Fortune whose sales have shown stellar growth of 284 percent YoY. Also, buyers have resumed purchase of corollas which have shown YoY growth of 5 percent post the recent model facelift. Tractor sales continue to exhibit upward trajectory with sales growing by 115 percent YoY in August 2017. AL Ghazi tractor (AGTL) has been the top performer in this segment with robust monthly sales growth of 26 percent.

Truck and bus sales of PAMA member companies in August 2017 remained strong, growing by 20 percent YoY.

“We foresee this trend to continue, fuelled by CPEC led growth, higher road connectivity, lower financing rate and change & enforcement of axle load limit per truck on highways by National Highway Authority (NHA).
Riaz Haq said…
#India's #Modi has a big problem in creating jobs. #Inequality is rising. #BJP #economy #unemployment

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-09-19/modi-s-jobs-problem-threatens-quest-to-lower-inequality-in-india


Prime Minister Narendra Modi has a jobs problem.

He swept to power three years ago promising India’s poor and middle classes he’d restore their "dignity" after years of swelling inequality, with job creation central to his pitch. But now, the jobs market has been slugged by last November’s shock cash ban and July’s imposition of a goods and services tax.

And things look like they’re about to get worse: India is set to see a further 30 percent-to-40 percent reduction of jobs in the manufacturing sector compared with last year, according to TeamLease Services Ltd., one of the country’s biggest recruitment firms. While other surveys aren’t quite so bleak, they also suggest Modi is a long way from creating the 10 million jobs a year needed to keep up with his young and rapidly expanding workforce.

The opposition -- in disarray since losing to Modi -- is dialing up its criticism as it eyes elections due in 2019.

"If India cannot give the millions of people entering the job market employment, anger will increase, and it has the potential to derail what has been built so far," Rahul Gandhi, heir-apparent to the main opposition Indian National Congress party, said in a speech at the University of California, Berkeley, on Sept. 11. "That will be catastrophic for India and the world beyond it."

Gandhi is the son and grandson of previous prime ministers, and could well be Modi’s direct opponent at the next vote.

Modi’s backers are alarmed too. A key ally and member of Modi’s party, Subramanian Swamy, told a TV channel over the weekend that he has conveyed concerns to Modi that the economy could be heading for a "major depression."

The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh -- the ideological parent of Modi’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party that works like a volunteer wing to ensure voter turnout during elections -- has alerted the BJP of signs of a shift in the public mood over the government’s performance, though Modi still remains personally popular, according to a report in the Telegraph newspaper last week that cited unnamed RSS sources.

Read: India’s Shock Therapy Has Some Serious Side Effects

Munira Loliwala, a general manager at TeamLease, said the slowdown accelerated sharply with demonetization. Indian manufacturers, who previously preferred to cut white-collar jobs rather than factory-floor workers, are now slashing all over, she said.

"We see no option, things are not looking to improve much," Loliwala said.


Loliwala was referring to Modi’s move in November to scrap 86 percent of currency in circulation, which contributed to growth in gross domestic product slumping to the lowest since 2014 last quarter. Modi then pushed through a nationwide goods and services tax on July 1, which is expected to benefit India in the long-run but for now is roiling supply chains.

Manufacturing accounts for some 18 percent of GDP and directly employs 12 percent of the population, government data show. Loliwala said that many of those who lose their jobs stay unemployed because they lack the communication skills required for the services sector, which accounts for 62 percent of GDP.
Riaz Haq said…
Value Added Sector Helps #Pakistan’s #Exports Upsurge. Textiles up 11.8%, non-textiles up 23.5% - https://pakwired.com/value-added-sector-behind-pakistans-exports-upsurge/ … via @pakwired

According to a recent report by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), Pakistan’s exports have shown a positive trend backed by rising exports via the value added sector. The growth pattern has been observed during the first two months of the current fiscal year 2017-18. The upward trend in the value added sector has given a significant boost to cummulative export numbers as the New Year kicked off.

Total exports during the two month period, July-August, increased to $3.49 billion as compared to $3.12 billion showing a growth of 11.8%. While the increase in non-textile goods has been registered at 23.5% reaching $1.31 billion during July-August 2017-18 versus $1.06 billion during the same period last year.

PERFORMANCE OF VALUE AND NON-VALUE ADDED TEXTILE EXPORTS

Readymade garments have given a major upward push to the overall exports pie increasing by 15.65% on a yearly basis reaching $418.63 million during July-August period. Garments in general have also surged by 16.4% showing volume based growth.

Another integral value-added product, knitwear managed to go up by 7.53% to reach $439 million during July-August. The volume based increase of knitwear exports was 8.23%. Additionally, bed wear exports grew by 8% amounting to $384.32 million while its quantity wise growth stood at 8.79%. Furthermore, the value based growth of towel exports showed 0.67% rise while its volume based growth was registered at 0.03%.

Conversely, the picture has not been equally nice for the intermediate goods like cotton yarn, as their exports slumped by 4% (value) and by 3.3% (volume). Deteriorating demand of cotton yarn and fabric from China is considered a crucial reason for their low sales. Another slump has been seen in the exports of cotton cloth, down by 7.8% in terms of value and quantity. Exports of raw cotton have also seen a downward trend with 14.7% in value and 14.15% in volume during July-August 2017-18.

A major blow has emanated from exports of non-value added products such as cotton carded, which dropped by a whopping 100% in value and volume. In addition, exports of tents and canvas declined by 22% in terms of value. On the other hand, exports of yarn slumped by 0.2% in value but increased in terms of volume.

Quick Read: When will Pakistani companies really value their human resource?

A GLANCE AT NON-TEXTILE EXPORTS

From the non-textile related goods, rice exports grew by a significant 40% during the two months. Basmati and other types of rice exports took a major leap.

From the food category, a major jump was seen in exports of wheat, sugar, fruits during the given period. Crude petroleum and petroleum naphtha registered a growth of 100% and 404% accordingly. Nonetheless, exports of sports goods and carpets saw a downward trend.

Value added leather products increased by 5.8% which was witnessing continuous slump during the last two years. Footwear showed a feeble growth of 0.1% during July-August 2017-18. Furthermore, surgical and engineering goods managed to rise by 26% and 23% respectively.
Riaz Haq said…
#Pakistan large scale manufacturing posts 4 year high growth of 12.98% in July 2017 | http://thenews.com.pk

https://www.thenews.com.pk/print/231581-LSM-posts-four-year-high-growth-of-1298-percent-in-July

Karachi: Large scale manufacturing sector posted a four-year high growth of 12.98 percent year-on-year in the first month of the current fiscal year on infrastructure-driven boom and growing auto demand.

Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS) data on Thursday showed that iron and steel production climbed 46.36 percent in July over the same month a year ago, followed by automobiles (42.56pc) and non-metallic mineral products (37.95pc).

LSM output increased 12.78 percent in September 2017 over the same month of 2016. PBS statistics revealed that production of billets soared more than 74 percent YoY to 476,000 tonnes in July.

Production of tractors more than doubled to 5,087 units in July 2017 from 2,067 units in July 2016, while output of trucks, jeeps and cars, light commercial vehicles and motorcycles increased 24.4 percent, 55.75 percent, 16.03 percent and 26.46 percent, respectively.

Other sectors that recorded growth in July included engineering products (21.95pc), food, beverages and tobacco (19.02pc), pharmaceuticals (11.14pc), paper and board (11.23pc), wood products (10.95pc), chemicals (5.13pc), coke and petroleum products (4.87pc), rubber products (4.51pc), leather products (2.52pc) and textile (0.43pc).

Fertiliser and electronics sectors, however, recorded a flat production in July over the corresponding month a year ago. Large scale manufacturing grew 4.36 percent in July over June, according to PBS.

Industrial production grew 5.02 percent in the last fiscal year of 2016/17. LSM, accounting for 80 percent of the industrial sector’s 10 percent share in GDP, posted a four-year high growth of 5.6 percent in the fiscal 2016/17. Government set LSM sector’s target at 5.7 percent for FY2018.

Infrastructure development boosted demand of iron and steel products as well as cement, which are the key industries in the country. Auto sales have also been growing in the recent past as demand of heavy vehicles in China-funded development projects, uptake of passenger vehicles and rising sales of tractors for recovering agriculture sector speeded up production in the industry.

The bureau logs trend of industrial sector on the basis of statistics from Oil Companies Advisory Committee (OCAC), ministry of industries and provincial bureaus of statistics. Ministry of industries track production trend of 36 products, Oil Companies Advisory Committee monitors 11 oil, lubricant and petroleum products and provincial authorities measure output of 65 items nationwide.

OCAC registered a 4.87 percent YoY growth in July and edged up 2.51 percent month-on-month. Production of liquefied petroleum gas surged 75.5 percent YoY to 56.29 million litres. Kerosene oil output soared 66.5 percent to 14.78 million litres in July.

Diesel production soared 41.33 percent to 2.15 million litres, while motor spirits output increased 14.6 percent to 237 million litres in July. Ministry of industries recorded a growth of 16.66 percent YoY and 8.09 percent month-on-month, said Pakistan Bureau of Statistics.
Riaz Haq said…
#India's exports up just 1.2%. Share of #India's #exports in #GDP at 14-year low of 19.4%. #Modi #BJP
http://www.business-standard.com/article/economy-policy/share-of-exports-in-gdp-at-14-year-low-of-19-4-117092500965_1.html

The share of export in India’s gross domestic product (GDP) declined to a 14-year low during the first quarter (Q1) of the current financial year (FY18). Growth in export of goods and services has remained below overall economic growth since FY15. Exports were up only 1.2 per cent at constant prices during the first quarter of FY18, against 5.7 per cent year-on-year (YoY) growth in GDP during the period. In value terms, India’s exports has been stagnant at around Rs 24 lakh crore (at 2011-12 prices) in the past three years, against 24 per cent cumulative ...
Riaz Haq said…
Why #India is now detached from the world, sitting out the global recovery in growth and jobs? #Modi https://blogs.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/toi-edit-page/uniquely-indian-problems-why-india-is-now-detached-from-the-world-sitting-out-the-global-recovery-in-growth-and-jobs/ … via @TOIOpinion by Ruchir Sharma

In the global jobs picture, India stands out as even more of a sore thumb. The worldwide unemployment rate, as calculated by JP Morgan research, is almost back to its pre-2008 crisis low of 5.5 per cent. Developed economies from the UK to Japan have the lowest unemployment rates seen in many decades. In emerging economies, the unemployment rate has been falling since 2014 and this year even countries such as Russia and Brazil, which experienced deep recessions, are seeing a marked improvement in the labour market. In India, meanwhile poor quality data makes it difficult to put a number on the job woes, but the available data is grim and news stories about jobs losses abound.

---------


The best explanation lies in recent domestic policy moves, as until last year both India and emerging markets broadly were slowing down in sync. A disconnect began late last year when growth in emerging markets started recovering and India kept slowing.
The first of the policy moves was the unique demonetisation experiment. The second was the Goods and Services Tax, which was supposed to bring India in line with global standards but instead added typically Indian layers of complexity. These policies disrupted local businesses, including exporters. Imports have surged to meet consumer demand, widening the trade deficit and cutting into GDP growth.
It is disappointing that India is missing out on the global revival in economic growth, but perhaps even more troubling that it is missing out on jobs growth – a trend that precedes the GDP slowdown but has also gotten worse over the past year.
Many commentators are blaming these troubles on global forces. In India, especially, it is popular to talk about how automation is taking jobs away from humans. But the global jobs boom suggests that there is little evidence for such losses. At any point in time technology is destroying some traditional jobs, and creating them in new industries.
India’s apologists also point to “premature deindustrialisation”, the idea that it is increasingly difficult for countries to export their way to prosperity, because of a more competitive environment for manufacturing globally and slumping world trade. Even though trade volumes have perked up this year, they are well below the pace seen before 2008. And competing in global manufacturing, which was always the most important path to mass employment, is harder now following the rise of China.
Riaz Haq said…
BBC News - #India jobs: The signs point to a bleak outlook for #employment. #Modi #BJP #economy

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-41495792#

Dr Abraham believes that existing jobs may have been drying up in India for a while now. Jobs in farming where nearly half of Indians are engaged for their livelihood - too many people cultivating too little land - are disappearing. Successive droughts and unremunerative prices have pushed people out of farms to seek jobs in construction and rural manufacturing. A McKinsey Global Institute study says farm jobs had reduced by 26 million between 2011 and 2015.
But a slowdown in growth - GDP growth has been falling for six consecutive quarters and hit a three year-low of 5.7% during April-June - triggered in part by a controversial cash ban last year and July's imposition of a sweeping but clunky Goods and Services tax that has adversely affected labour-absorbing sectors like farming, construction and private businesses, hitting jobs further.

Hiring in more than 120 companies - metal, capital goods, retail, power, construction and consumer goods - has fallen, according to an analysis by The Indian Express. This, a top HR executive told the newspaper, "reflects upon the lack of expansion plans and near-term growth expectation of these companies".
India's Economic Survey says creating jobs is India's "central challenge". More than 12 million Indians will be entering the labour market and looking for jobs every year until 2030. Some 26 million Indians - roughly a population equal to Australia's - already are looking for regular work.
'Scratching a living'
India has a curious jobs problem. Unlike in the West, there are no dole queues, for example, which are a marker of unemployment. Economist Vijay Joshi says poverty and lack of a social security system "ensure that most people have to scratch a living somehow, simply in order to survive".
Also there are many "openly unemployed people" who are supported by their families. Then there's a vast amount of underemployment - too many people sharing work that could be done by fewer hands. Many work for long hours with poor returns.
Also, most people - more than 80% of the labour force - work in the sprawling, unorganised or informal industries with poor working conditions, paltry wages and scanty benefits. Very few of these jobs lead to security of income, location or employment. Only 7% of Indians actually work in the formal economy with full benefits, according to estimates.
Riaz Haq said…
Pakistan looks to increase share of CPEC labor market
KHURSHID AHMED | Published — Friday 16 February 2018

http://www.arabnews.pk/node/1247666/pakistan

KARACHI: Pakistan expects the demand for skilled manpower to grow exponentially as the multibillion-dollar China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) project expands.
“The total cost of CPEC projects has already gone from $46 billion to $62 billion and it is hoped that the total cost will rise to $100 billion by 2030,” Executive Director of the Planning Commission’s Center of Excellence (COE) for CPEC Dr. Shahid Rashid said in a press briefing on Thursday.
Many Pakistani institutes are now offering a range of courses — including Chinese-language — to enable Pakistani youths to find employment, and China has vowed to help set up a world-class vocational training institute in Islamabad. More institutes are expected to open in Pakistan in the near future to cover the expected rise in job opportunities offered by CPEC.
CPEC starts from Kashgar in Xinjiang, China, and reaches Karachi and Gwadar, on Pakistan’s south coast via the Khunjerab Pass.
Chinese Ambassador to Pakistan Yao Jing reiterated during a meeting with Executive Director of National Vocational and Technical Training Commission Zulfiqar Ahmad Cheema that CPEC will provide job opportunities to thousands of trained Pakistanis.
Jing vowed that China will soon initiate special programs for Pakistani trainers, which will enable them to teach hundreds of Pakistani workers every year how to use modern machinery and equipment.
Majyed Aziz Balagamwala, president of the Employers’ Federation of Pakistan and a member of the Sindh Technical Education and Vocational Training Authority, told Arab News that a training program “initiated with leading institutes” would produce 200,000 skilled workers in the next three years.
“We do not intend to just produce labor, our aim is to provide them with multiple skills so that they can get better jobs and play their role in the country’s economic uplift by contributing to CPEC,” he explained.
Analyst and CPEC expert Maqbool Afridi stressed the need to expand the skills of Pakistani workers.
“Chinese workers are highly technical. We need to change our attitude toward learning,” Afridi said. “If the Chinese can work with high tech knowledge, why can’t we?”
Afridi said CPEC is a world-class project that demands technically skilled manpower not only to run the projects, but also to balance the share of jobs between the two countries.
Despite substantial progress on CPEC, many are unhappy about how little information about the project has been shared with the public.
“We still don’t know much about the CPEC projects,” said Executive Director of National Organization for Working Communities Farhat Parveen. “The government has been secretive, instead of sharing information about the projects and the number of people required so that skilled workers are imparted with the required training.”
Riaz Haq said…
Japan to provide $4 million to help generate employment in Pakistan

https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics-Economy/International-Relations/Japan-to-provide-4-million-to-help-generate-employment-in-Pakistan

Japan signed a commitment Monday to provide $3.9 million to the United Nations Development Program in Pakistan for an initiative aimed at generating nearly 20,000 jobs for youth in the provinces of Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The agreement, signed by Japanese Ambassador Takashi Kurai and UNDP Country Director Ignacio Artaza at a ceremony in Islamabad, covers funding to help set up 50 community centers in the two provinces.

The centers will provide vocational training, particularly in information technology, to young people to prepare them for self-employment or employment in different vocations.

"Japan will continue to support youth and young women so that they can take the lead in development of the country, which has bright future with young population," Kurai said in his speech.

Pakistan has a population of 207 million, with 31 percent between 15 and 29 years, and a youth unemployment rate of over 10 percent.

"It is crucial to invest in this 'youth bulge' and provide young people with the skills and knowledge they need to operate in an increasingly competitive employment market, and to help Pakistan's youthful population to contribute in its sustainable development," the Japanese Embassy said in a statement.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and adjacent tribal areas bordering Afghanistan have been dubbed as nursing grounds for terrorism, with officials and studies often attributed this to lack of employment opportunities and poverty.

Riaz Haq said…
The Inter­na­tional Labour Organisa­tion (ILO) has warned that Asia-Pacific still faces structural weaknesses in its labour markets despite two decades of economic growth.

https://www.dawn.com/news/1446301


https://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/---asia/---ro-bangkok/---sro-bangkok/documents/publication/wcms_649885.pdf

In its ‘Asia-Pacific Employ­ment’ and ‘Social Outlook 2018’, released on Friday, ILO pointed out that although the regional unemployment rate is projected to remain 4.1 per cent through 2020, the vulnerable employment rate is expect to creep up towards 49pc, reversing a downward trend of at least two decades.

The region’s future prospects will require that economic growth go hand in hand with a further expansion of decent work, it says.

While real wage growth surpassed labour productivity growth between 2010 and 2016 in almost all countries, the increase in wages of employees looked especially strong in China, Thailand and Vietnam. However, negative wage growth was witnessed in Pakis­tan in 2015-16 at minus 4.7pc.

In Pakistan’s education sector, 6.6pc of the total female employment in 2016 was well behind the 72.9pc share in agriculture and 12.7pc in manufacturing.

Pakistan stands out with 15.3pc of women working from their homes, and 37pc working on the land (in agriculture) in 2017.

Structural transformation has been strongly felt in the region, with employment moving from agriculture mainly into services and only to some extent into industry. Most of the loss in agriculture was taken up by the increase in employment in the services sector, where 740 million jobs have been gained since 2000.

Manufacturing jobs dec­rea­sed slightly from the peak in the mid-2000s, with more job losses accruing to women than men.

The report says while the Asia-Pacific region has made rapid progress to substantially reduce extreme poverty, one fourth of all workers in the region — 446m workers — still lived in moderate or extreme poverty in 2017 and nearly half of the workforce — 930m people — were still making a living in vulnerable employment as own-account or unpaid contributing family workers.

With 1.9bn workers — 1.2bn men and 700m women, the Asia-Pacific region represented 60pc of the global workforce in 2017.

Asia and the Pacific has the most people working, relative to the working-age population. Employment-to-population ratio stands at 59.7pc, compared with 58.6pc at the global level.

Large numbers of workers in the region, especially those in low-paid jobs, work more than 48 hours per week.

The average hours worked in Southern Asia and Eastern Asia in 2017 were the world’s highest, at 46.4 and 46.3 hours per week, respectively.

In Eastern Asia, almost one in five workers worked in excess of 60 hours per week. The regional unemployment rate at 4.1pc is the world’s lowest and well below the global rate of 5.5pc in 2017. But while the global unemployment rate has held steady since 2015, the rate in the Asia-Pacific region has increased slightly by 0.1 percentage point.

In total there were 80.9m unemployed persons in Asia and the Pacific in 2018.

At 10.4pc, unemployment rate among youth remained unchanged from 2015, while the global rate increased to 12.6pc. Thirty five per cent of the region’s unemployed were youth (aged 15—24), although youth made up only 20pc of the working-age population.

In general terms, the labour market gains evident in the Asia-Pacific region in the past few years remain present but fragile.

Decent work deficits persist in all countries in the region and continue to weigh heavily on development trajectories.

Over the coming years, economic growth is expected to remain strong in the region, with growth rates of 5.6pc expected for 2018 and 2019, compared with 3.9pc at the global level.

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