G20 Labour and Employment Ministers have concluded their meetings in Ankara, Turkey this week with a renewed commitment to creating economic growth and job creation, especially for young people.
The Minister for Employment, Senator the Hon Eric Abetz said the meeting built on the actions agreed under Australia’s presidency of the G20 in 2014 to generate more jobs, boost workforce participation and prevent unemployment from becoming entrenched.
“We are working every day to create the conditions that grow jobs by strengthening the economy; abolishing the carbon and mining taxes, cutting red and green tape, investing in infrastructure and negotiating Free Trade Agreements.
“Since the Coalition was elected there have been 336,000 new jobs created, with nearly 163,000 new jobs having been created this year,” Senator Abetz said.
“The Government already has as a key focus job creation and will work towards the ambitious but achievable youth employment target agreed by Ministers.
“There is no doubt of the transformative power of the free market and the social and economic good that comes from the dignity of work. I am pleased that G20 Employment Ministers focused on the benefits that come from empowering individuals and by providing equality of opportunity.
“In that context, the declaration provides some important food for thought, in particular for developing economies.”
The Assistant Minister for Employment, Luke Hartsuyker who attended the meeting, said the discussions focused on the importance of practical supports to help people, especially young people, into work.
“With more than 74 million young people unemployed around the world, helping more young people to enter and remain connected to the workforce remains a significant concern for G20 member nations,” Mr Hartsuyker said.
“The G20 Labour and Employment Ministers agreed to work to reduce youth unemployment by 15 per cent by 2025 and to focus their efforts on those most at risk of being left permanently behind on the labour market.
Minister Hartsuyker said the Australian Government is already acting to help more young people into work through the Government’s new $331 million Youth Employment Strategy announced in the 2015-16 Budget.
“As part of our Budget announcement, the Government is establishing a new Transition to Work service to provide more intensive support to young people who leave school early to develop the attitudes and behaviours sought by employers.
“Young people who fail to complete Year 12 face a high risk of becoming long term unemployed, which in turn, makes it harder for them to gain that first foothold in the labour market.
“There was strong interest from other G20 Ministers in our approach to better prepare young people to meet the actual needs of local employers and the practical supports we provide to employers, like the $6,500 Youth Wage subsidy.”
Minister Hartsuyker also said that the Australian Government’s new jobactive employment service was seen as a good example of a modern, outcome focused system.
“Australia has long been recognised for our leadership in the design and delivery of public employment services to job seekers. I am very pleased that G20 Ministers have agreed to a set of principles to inform the future design and delivery of employment services that mirror our own,” Minister Hartsuyker said.
The G20 Labour and Employment Ministers also discussed:
• The implementation of existing G20 commitments, including those made under the Australian G20 Presidency to lift female participation in the labour market and reduce gender gaps
• Coordination with G20 Finance Ministers, with employment and participation measures a key pillar of the G20 Growth Strategies