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Story Highlights

  • Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, says it is incumbent on the public and private sectors to ensure that workers keep up with the changing technology in today’s competitive world.
  • The Prime Minister said more needs to be done by way of surveying the labour market, in an effort to create and provide an accessible labour market information system.
  • “The policy of this government is to engage and have dialogue with the stakeholders..."

Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, says it is incumbent on the public and private sectors to ensure that workers keep up with the changing technology in today’s competitive world.

“If firms have people employed, but the technology is changing and there is no deliberate instrumental approach to ensure that they (firms)  adjust to the technology quickly, so as to preserve those jobs, then the people are going to lose their jobs,” Mr. Holness said.

Addressing the  34th annual Convention of the Jamaica Employers Federation (JEF) at the Montego Bay Convention Centre on May 27,  the Prime Minister said the Government will have to assist companies to be able to spot the changes in technology, helping them to respond and also to train their existing staff to adjust.

“If the education system is not responsive enough to turn out the skills that businesses need, then it is not an unemployment problem, but an unemployability problem. That is a failure of the signaling mechanisms between firms and schools,” Mr. Holness noted.

The Prime Minister  said more needs to be done by way of surveying the labour market, in an effort to create and provide an accessible labour market information system.

“This would certainly help with the allocated efficiency of our labour market. That alone could knock off one or two percentage points from our unemployment rate,” he added.

Meanwhile, the Prime Minister said he will be having further consultations with the JEF to chart the way forward on the road to prosperity, adding that an educated and a well informed society is a recipe for success.

“The policy of this government is to engage and have dialogue with the stakeholders.  We can’t treat things in isolation and do things without engaging you the stakeholders. When we work in unison and speak with one voice, then the possibilities are endless,” Mr. Holness said.