Mauritius

July 05, 2013

Youth Unemployment: Shakeel Mohamed Points to Youth and Private Sector

For Shakeel Mohamed, Minister of Labour, two reasons for the high unemployment rate among young people in Mauritius are related to youth themselves, and private sector companies. In addition, it encourages emigration in the workplace.

Shakeel Mohamed acknowledges that the high rate of youth unemployment is a reality in Mauritius but also abroad. The minister was speaking on Wednesday, Quatre-Bornes, as part of a workshop on youth unemployment, organized by the National Economic and Social Council (NESC). To explain this, he mentions, first, the bad choices made by some young people as they begin their training.

"Young people choose training in sectors where there is no market. Others seek work with us members but have no ability. There are those who are afraid to go abroad because it is cold. We think that when we studied is good, but when you're on the ground you feel stupid because you do not practice. In Canada, for example, without experience you are not employable, "says Minister of Labour. He also said that too many young people and their parents think that because they are recorded in the Labour Office, they will have a government job.

Second, Shakeel Mohamed points to the private sector as a factor in high unemployment among young people. According to him, there is no consistency between the actions of the private sector and government policy. "In Mauritius, where the government is preparing an amendment to the labor laws to legislate on the 'shift work', the private sector does everything to counter it. This amendment is based on the model of countries such as Austria, Germany and the Nordic countries where there is full employment and is recognized by the International Labour Office (ILO). These amendments allow employers to pay new workers rather than pay more for overtime of existing employees, "said the Minister of Labour.

Shakeel Mohamed said that young people should take the opportunities presented to them abroad. He says that fears related to brain drain are unfounded because the young leave to work in other countries relate in one way or another to their country of origin. He cites for example the case of India, where many people have left to work elsewhere and where economic development is now important. In addition, he stressed that Mauritius is a small country where there is less opportunities.

Also present at the workshop, Suren Dayal, Minister of Social Integration, said for his part that the youth unemployment has an impact on their quality of life, well-being of their families and consequently society as a whole. He also reminded the government's initiative to launch next the Professional Higher School Certificate (HSC Pro) year.

 

Text by Patrice Donzelot, Defi Media
 

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