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Establishment of National Employment Coordination Committee

BY: Charlotte Hanson
Ignatius Baffuor Awuah - Minister of Employment and Labour Relations
Ignatius Baffuor Awuah - Minister of Employment and Labour Relations

A Coordinated Programme for Economic Policies and Social Development, dubbed ‘Agenda for Jobs’, places employment at the centre of the national development effort.

Also, the National Employment Policy (NEP) developed in 2015 identifies job creation opportunities in all sectors of the economy and provides the framework for ensuring forward and backward linkages to facilitate the creation of jobs for job seekers, particularly for the teeming youth.

Thus, since 2017, the government has been rolling out programmes, including Planting for Food and Jobs, the Nation Builders' Corp, One-District, One-Factory, stimulus packages, entrepreneurship and business support services, MASLOC, among others, for employment opportunities.

Also under the Youth Employment Agency (YEA), the government established a ‘Job Centre’, an artisan directory, regional and district flagship projects and the ‘Work-Abroad Programme’.

In the private sector, for instance, organisations are investing in opportunities that result in further job creation.

Data

Within the second quarter of 2021, the Labour Department (LD) under the Ministry of Employment and Labour Relations (MELR) reported that registered Private Employment Agencies (PEAs) placed over 3,000 job seekers into vacancies in the private sector.

Labour Market Information from the Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) shows that the informal sector also employs between 70 and 80 per cent of the workforce.

The MELR coordinates employment and job creation interventions, promote harmonious industrial relations and enforces decent work standards.

Over the years, the MELR has been found wanting in churning out timely labour market information on the government’s job creation interventions and oftentimes relies on the GSS.

In order to enhance the coordination of job creation interventions, there is the need to establish a common platform for the evaluation of job creation efforts, the setting of job creation targets and for reports on outcomes of such interventions.

NECC

It is against this background that the MELR established the National Employment Coordinating Committee (NECC) with the remit to enhance the efforts of the ministry and also to effectively coordinate the labour market and issue timely reports on job creation outcomes.

The NECC is an inter-ministerial committee composed of 38 institutions and chaired by the sector Minister, Ignatius Baffour Awuah.

In order to facilitate the coordination, harmonisation and monitoring of activities in the employment sector, NECC is expected to undertake the following:

• Estimate job-creation potential of the economy.

• Advise the government on foreign employment opportunities.

• Advise the government on national employment target setting.

• Monitor progress and assess impacts of policies on the achievements of national
employment targets.

• Advocate and support the establishment and full operationalisation of an automated/integrated Labour Market Information System.

• Promote linkages (coordination and collaboration) among sectoral policies and interventions for job creation.

• Harmonise employment policies, programmes and projects for maximised impacts.

• Evaluate, review and recommend reforms for job creation interventions for better results.

• Promote decent work standards in the informal economy.

• Commission studies on topical employment issues.

The NECC was inaugurated on February 21, 2022, and will be meeting on a quarterly basis.

The writer is Head, Public Affairs Unit, MELR & staff of ISD.