The second G20 Taskforce on Employment meeting for 2014 was held on 10 and 11 April in Paris.
The focus for the meeting was how to prevent unemployment from becoming structural, with the major topics being youth unemployment, long-term unemployment and skills mismatch.
One central theme that arose from the meeting was the importance of collaboration to address employment issues. This was highlighted by feedback from the Finance and Sherpa Tracks on the need to create strong links between the country employment plans and growth strategies being developed by each member. The taskforce agreed to a joint meeting with the Framework Working Group to discuss these connections.
The International Labour Organization reports that there are 74.5 million unemployed young people around the world in 2013. The taskforce reflected on key messages from youth-themed conferences held by the European Union and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation Development earlier in the week, which focused on the need for collaboration between all stakeholders to address the issue of youth unemployment. Delegates agreed that specific actions on youth unemployment should be included in each country employment plan.
The World Bank also presented to the taskforce on the topic of long-term unemployment, with three key messages: it incurs a high cost, there is no ‘fit for all’ best practice solution and intervention needs to be tailored to specific economic circumstances. Each G20 member will develop strategies for addressing long-term unemployment that reflect their individual priorities and needs through their country employment plans.
On the topic of skills mismatch, the recurring themes were the need to recognise skills, better anticipate future skill needs and implement multi-facetted strategies and collaborative approaches. The taskforce heard from social partners and engagements groups on actions that could be taken to address the issue.