Decent Work, an argentine challenge

EL CRONISTA – The significant fall in jobs under the current administration is virtually the same as the one under the previous administration four years ago, affecting millions of people who need to work because government assistance just throws them into misery, marginalization and exclusion.
The debacle was caused by a disastrous combination of legacy stagflation, the Covid-19 pandemic and the paralysis of the entire economy due to government decisions.
Once and again, with the upcoming elections, we are swamped with repetitive, ambiguous and unreliable diagnoses and surveys, leading to the conclusion that it is essential to create some two million registered jobs to end poverty and indigence, and improve people’s quality of life.
The ruling party continues to argue that useful civil service should be created, in a State where there are 3.5 million people employed for each actual job position, a ratio that will increase to 5:1 as a result of the use of IT, automation and new technologies.
For ten years now the number of registered jobs has been kept at six million registered employees in the private sector, with more than 40% of them below the poverty line. INDEC and the surveys have never taken into consideration the rate of natural increase when measuring unemployment, and those who receive government assistance play an ambiguous role in the final calculation:
should they be included or not?
At IDEA 2021 Colloquium, the need to create genuine employment was put forward but without describing which are the instruments that can help create it; it is quite clear that welfare programs are just a palliative, which over time turn into an insufficient subsidy perpetuating the calamity of poverty across generations.
Again Pope Francis has given the message that it is absolutely necessary to build confidence, promote job creation, and above all, teach the excluded people those skills required by the labor market, which nowadays has more and more demands.
Leaving aside the contradictions between action and words, and the promises in politicians’ speeches, in addition to the series of fanciful claims by candidates, the truth is that the State’s voracity to collect taxes prevails over the need to launch new businesses and work towards sustainable growth, which is unquestionable in some sectors.
Tech companies are at the forefront of these contradictions. For instance, MercadoLibre calculates new hires by the hour and Globant announces the creation of 15,000 new jobs. Then come logistics companies engaged in shipping and delivery, together with those that provide door-to-door services, such as paper documents or money transporters.
Reactivation at the construction industry has reached pre-pandemic levels, reactivating other related activities such as digging, concreting, enclosures, glasswork, pipes and installations, painting and coating, equipment security and elevators, and anti-fire systems.
The same happens in agriculture with the export of regional produce, such as citrus fruits, lemon and wine, or star products such as corn, wheat and soybeans. Upstream mining has more than twenty projects under development.
In addition to all these activities, domestic tourism is booming, anticipating a record season 2021/2022. It is also worth mentioning that value may be added to raw materials, which are now transformed abroad and then brought back in after being manufactured in neighboring countries.
In this context, contradictions should come to an end. Day in day out the State is showing that whatever it touches, it destroys it, makes it unviable, or causes a rise in inflation.
Nationalization is the main enemy of job creation, and for employees to be positive and lead to multiple and diverse opportunities, the existing gaps should be filled.
The two most serious issues are the learning lag for more than ten million adults, who are digitally illiterate and have not finished elementary education, and the group of former workers excluded from the system due to technological substitution. Both processes continue to grow inevitably, and it is essential to quickly create a new educational model.
Remember that without growth no sustainable employment can be created; without a market open to the world there is no room for existing companies to invest; without the leading figures’ consensual decision about the real economy, and without clear rules mistrust and uncertainty prevail, discouraging foreign investment.
Before and after the elections, everyone should make their contribution for employment to become a vital component of the economic recovery agenda of the government, at the national, provincial and municipal levels. And this can only be achieved if we all help promote sustainable growth.