Costa Rica’s public institutions are working on a coordinated strategy to increase job opportunities for young people.
As part of the strategy, the Foreign Ministry’s Directorate of International Cooperation led negotiations with the Ministry of Economy, Industry, and Commerce (MEIC), the Ministry of Labor and Social Security (MTSS), the National Learning Institute (INA), the Ministry of National Planning and Economic Policy (MIDEPLAN) and the Industrial Development Officer for Costa Rica of the International Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO-VIENA), Juan Pablo Díaz-Castillo.
With this meeting, all institutions are expected to coordinate efforts to generate employment projects for young people who have a basic level of training and thus integrate them into the industrial sector.
Díaz-Castillo explained that the sectors that need workers must be identified. He also mentioned that with this information, UNIDO would seek to mobilize budgetary assistance to evaluate the country’s labor supply in specific sectors to promote production.
At the meeting held on September 28, the Costa Rican institutions reached an agreement with UNIDO to determine the occupational demand and the areas of the country with the most significant employment needs following the development policies of the country’s border and coastal areas.
Unfortunately, youth unemployment continues to affect many young people. The problem was further exacerbated by the economic crisis caused by the pandemic. The country has a youth unemployment rate of 34.2%, the highest in Latin America and above the regional average.
Given the current situation, UNIDO agreed to evaluate the labor supply and demand for a productive sector and thus generate a pilot project. On the other hand, the ministries MEIC, MTSS, INA, and MIDEPLAN will start working to formulate the youth employment project with UNIDO.
“This initiative is part of a process of the Directorate of International Cooperation. We hope to awaken the interest to work with this United Nations agency in cooperation projects that positively impact the rates and levels of employment in Costa Rica,” explained the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The situation is further aggravated by the crisis in public education, during which many people have not received classes or have received inadequate training. Problems stemming from poor schooling are a barrier that impedes many from entering the modern labor market. Therefore, the country’s efforts should also be oriented toward improving the quality of public education.