LCCI bemoans worsening unemployment
The worsening unemployment in the country, especially among youths, put at 54 per cent, poses great dangers to the economic, social and political stability of the country, the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) has said.
In a communiqué at the end of the chamber’s council meeting chaired by its President, Alhaji Remi Bello, LCCI expressed concern over the situation, warning that there is a correlation among unemployment, poverty and insecurity.
The Council, therefore, called for the adoption of appropriate policies to fix the unemployment problem, especially through the creation of an enabling environment for the private sector, especially the small and scale medium enterprises (SMEs) to retain jobs and create new ones.
The Council expressed worries that the productivity and competitiveness of enterprises in the economy have been trending downwards, thus affecting the capacity to create jobs.
Acknowledging the various initiatives of the government, such as the Youth Enterprise for Innovation (YouWin) programme, the Council said it believes that given the magnitude of the problem, a more fundamental and sustainable strategy is necessary.
It proposed, among other policy options, support for SMEs to retain existing jobs and create new ones; critical areas of support include funding and capacity building; the government should accord higher priority to investments in infrastructure to reduce the high infrastructure deficit and moderate the cost of doing business in the economy.
The Council noted that quality infrastructure would improve private sector productivity and competiveness, which in turn, will boost the capacity to create new job.
“Council also called for a concentrated and sustained effort to increase the foreign reserves to enable a downward review of the tight monetary policy to boost credit availability and reduce interest rates, it said.
It affirmed that the stimulation of economic growth is more paramount now to create jobs.
Continuing, it said: “Council proposed that the educational curriculum in the nation’s tertiary institutions should align with contemporary demands of enterprises in the economy.
“There should be a good fit between the curriculum and industry requirements. “Council stressed the need to promote sectoral linkages to create the desired multiplier that would translate to the creation of more jobs. There should be stronger linkages between the agricultural sector and the industrial sector. Policies of backward integration in all sectors should be accelerated.”
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