8 Decent Work And Economic Growth 8. Decent Work And Economic Growth

Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all.

Technology in action Opportunities & Challenges
2/3rdsOf children now entering primary school will work in jobs that don’t exist today
5.8%Forecasted rise in global unemployment in 2017
2bnPeople are globally unbanked

Global unemployment is forecast to rise to 5.8% in 2017, representing 201 million people out of work – the majority of whom are young people. High youth unemployment is a major problem in many developing economies, with the growth of the workforce outstripping job creation. Technological development and automation are often cited as negative forces on employment opportunities for youth. 600 million new jobs will need to be created by 2030 to keep pace with the growth of the working age population. The creation of quality jobs will remain a significant challenge for almost all countries. Having a job does not guarantee an escape from poverty. The ILO finds that vulnerable employment represents 42% of total employment: one in two workers in emerging countries and four in five in developing economies. According to the ILO, 21 million people are victims of forced labour globally – over 50% of whom are in Asia Pacific.

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Opportunities & Challenges

Key challenges to deliver Goal 8 include:

Skills for the jobs of the future: Young people are disproportionately engaged in low-quality jobs with fewer opportunities for permanent employment. The education system remains out of step with the needs of rapidly changing workplaces. As low-skilled jobs are lost to automation, it will be critical that young people are equipped with the necessary skills to secure quality work.

Financial access: Globally, two billion people are “unbanked” and lack access to formal financial services. When low-income workers and poor families gain access to basic financial services (e.g. savings, credit), they take the first step towards greater security. Lack of credit history can be a barrier, especially for those who seek to start or expand a business.

Forced labor and modern slavery: Mechanisms to identify child and forced labor throughout global supply chains need to be put in place. Sharing and tracking information will be critical to understand and address the scope, size and nature of modern slavery.

Insufficient labor demands: The job landscape of 2030 will likely look vastly different to today, as companies and industries face profound evolution or disruption through digital technology. Two-thirds of children now entering primary school will work in jobs that don’t exist today. Programmers and data scientists will be in high demand, and working environments will evolve with the rise of the gig economy and flexible working patterns. While organizations such as WEF and Deloitte have highlighted the job creation potential in this future, technology could result in significant job losses. McKinsey estimates that 45% of activities individuals are paid to perform today can be automated by adapting existing technologies. Although technology could create job opportunities for highly skilled workers, those losing their jobs as a result of automation are unlikely to have the skills required for these jobs.

The world needs strong multi-stakeholder partnerships like 2030Vision that focus on the technological innovations required to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development... I welcome 2030Vision for its leadership and ambition towards attaining our shared Goals for People and Planet by 2030. António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations
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