BACKGROUND ON THE SITUATION IN THE LABOUR MARKET SECTOR
The Georgian Labour Market is presently faced with a number of challenges:
• Long-term structural unemployment occasioned by the collapse of the industrial base following the break-up of the Soviet Union;
• Manifest underutilisation of labour resources as evidenced by the low participation of the working age population;
• A predominance of low value added and low-paid jobs, concentrated primarily in the agriculture, public services, and the wholesale and retail sectors;
• Despite favourable conditions for Foreign Direct Investment, extensive deregulation of the labour market, and a liberal regulatory framework supportive of business development, there is a dearth of new jobs being created and employers report difficulties in recruiting appropriately skilled staff to those jobs which are being created;
• There is an evident lack of understanding/information on the current structure of the labour market and the actual and potential growth points in labour demand, and limited support services for job-seekers;
• There is also limited coordination between education and VET policy and the needs and expectations of employers and potential and actual employees;
In 2006, the then Government abolished the State Employment Services at central and local levels, closed the Labour and Employment Policy Department of the Ministry of Labour, Health and Social Affairs (MoLHSA) and pursued a very liberal/flexible labour market policy. In contrast the new Government has adopted a more interventionist approach: the Labour Code has been amended; a new Health and Safety Regulations are being drafted; and a new strategy of re-establishing labour market institutions is pursued. . The present Strategy was conceived as an interim document in order to guide immediate actions to tackle unemployment.
In February 2013, the MoLHSA established a new Department of Labour and Employment Policy. The Department comprises of three Divisions: Labour Relations and Social Partnership, Labour Market Analysis and Employment Promotion. The Ministry has a comparatively limited experience of designing and implementing employment and labour market policies, and acknowledges that it needs support to build institutional and human resource capacities, notably with respect to the elaboration, costing and monitoring of policy. Given the significance afforded to Health and Safety issues in the Association Agreement, the MoLHSA urgently needs to strengthen its legal drafting capacities and to reinforce the labour inspection services.
Responsibility for the provision of employment services has been allocated to the Social Service Agency. The statutes of the Social Service Agency have recently been amended to allocate the Agency a significant role in the coordination of the activities of the Employment Support Services (ESS) at national and district level, to host the Labour Market Information system, and to oversee implementation of labour market and employment policies
EU Technical Assistance to VET and Employment Reforms in Georgia
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and Employment Reforms in Georgia and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union
© 2015 EUVEGE
GOOD PRACTICES IN LABOUR MARKET AND VOCATIONAL EDUCATION AND TRAINING
The current EU Technical Assistance (EUVEGE) project supports Georgia’s Sector Reforms in the areas of Labour Market / Employment and Vocational Education and Training (VET). The Government of Georgia strives for an update and adjustment of these sector policies according to international and in particular according to European standards. It is important to be aware of the position regarding sector policies among other countries in the world - and since Georgia is envisaging an approach to the European Union, it is crucial to compare and influence current situation with the EU sector policy standards and developments. With this material the EUVEGE project aims to provide a contribution to this orientation process.
From a wide range of international, especially EU experiences and best practice examples we choose those, which have in our opinion a clear and direct relation to current and future sector policy developments in the areas of Labour Market / Employment and VET. In the following best practice examples we also included cases from Georgia. In spite there is an urgent need for concentrated efforts at present and in future, to update and upgrade the regarding sector policies’ structures, methods and instruments; we also can find already now and here in Georgia good and effective solutions, which should be taken into consideration. This also shows very clearly, that also under the given, often still not optimal conditions, it is possible to establish and operate effective sector policy structures.
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