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SPAIN: the fight against the high unemployment

by Jan Goller The unemployment rate stays extremely high in Spain - with more than 32%. But how to improve the situation? Therefore the Spanish Government approved now the Youth Employment Plan. Some of its aims are the apprenticeship of at least 225 000 young people in digital skills and the creation of a network of 3 000 new counsellors. The plan is valid during 2019 and 2021 and costs about 2 billion euros. Other objectives of the plan are the establishment of a quality labour framework in employment and dignity at work. Young people should be protagonists of their labour insertion and qualification. The activity rate of young people between 20 and 29 years is expected to increase to 73.5%. The number of permanent contracts is predicted to rise by 15%.

Hope for a better situation with the aid of the new plan

The plan of Shock for Youth Employment 2019-2021 has been approved by Spanish labor Minister, Magdalena Valerio. It should reduce the youth unemployment rate from the current 32,6% to 23,5%. Besides, it will allow 1 168 000 unemployed people under 25 years old to enter the labor market. The minister has referred to youth as the future of society and a driver of change. Nowadays they are affected by serious difficulties to find work. The new plan developed by the Government provides tools, means and opportunities for the personal and professional growth of youth. Statistic: Youth unemployment rate in EU member states as of January 2019 (seasonally adjusted) | Statista Find more statistics at Statista According to Valerio, the problems that affect young people require the implementation of measures to improve the labour situation. Certainly, it is necessary to combat early school leaving and to promote equal opportunities between men and women. For young entrepeneurs there should be aids to create their own business. The measures have to do with the Sustainable Development Goals of the Agenda 2030 and serve to reach Goal 8.6.
By 2020, significantly reduce the proportion of young people who are not employed and do not study or an apprenticeship. (Agenda 2030)

Objectives of the Plan at one glance

  • Establish a quality labor framework in employment and dignity at work.
  • Make young people protagonists of their process of labor insertion and qualification.
  • Increase the qualification and job placement by giving young people more professional skills.
  • Promote a new economic model based on productivity and added value.
  • Provide the Public Employment Services with the resources to provide adequate and individualized care.
  • Eliminate horizontal segregation and the gender wage gap
  • Pay special attention to the most vulnerable groups (migrants, long-term unemployed, people with disabilities, etc.).

Expected results in figures

  • Reduce the youth unemployment rate to 23.5% within three years, decreasing by 168,000 the number of young people under 25 years of age unemployed.
  • Increase the activity rate of young people between 20 and 29 years old to 73.5%.
  • Reduce by 20% the current gender gap in registered unemployment for people under 30 years of age.
  • Increase the number of permanent contracts by 15% each year, reaching 2 900 000 hirings during the three years as a whole.
  • Training programs in key competences for 43% (100,000) of the young people registered as unemployed and without any formation
  • Training 25% (40,000) of young people in strategic sector competencies (25% of the group of young people with higher education and formation).

Six axes to create new opportunities for young people

The plan of the Spanish Government consists of six axes.
  1. Orientation. It creates a network of 3 000 people who will be responsible for the orientation, complemented by a network of young mediators. Additionally, 11o mediators will help young inmigrants and unaccopanied minors to find work.
  2. Training. The aim is to facilitate labor insertion through training programs with a commitment to hiring. It includes second chance programs with scholarships.
  3. Employment opportunities. This axis encourages the hiring and maintenance of jobs, for the most vulnerable groups. So it supports especially disabled, people in situations of social exclusion, victims of terrorism and women victims of gender violence.
  4. Equality.  It promotes equality between young women and men in access. Furthermore, it implies the reconciliation of personal, family and work life.
  5. Entrepreneurship.  It should encourage entrepreneurship, autonomous work and boost local economic development with the aid of pilot programs.
  6. Improvement of the institutional framework. This axis includes improvement actions in management, collaboration, coordination and communication within the Spanish System of Youth Guarantee.

Valid for three years

The Youth Employment Plan will have a validity of 3 years, and it will cost around 2 billion euros.
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