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Reactivate economy, create jobs, ILO tells governments

By  Funmi Komolafe
GENEVA -   The Director-General of the International Labour Organisation, ILO ,  Mr. Juan Somavia,  has  called on nations of the world to reactivate the real economy  and create jobs as a way of emerging from the current global recession.

Somavia in a message to the 99th session  of the International Labour Conference said,  “ the only sustainable way out of the crisis is by reactivating  the real economy and creating employment.  There is no other way.  Despite the multiple uncertainties we face, we cannot lose this focus”.

The director-general under whose leadership the Decent  Work Agenda was initiated said, “ The  world faces  not only a fiscal deficit, but also a huge deficit  of decent work”.

He said, “ Unemployment remains very high and the informal economy is widening.  The most vulnerable sectors and the middle classes in many countries  are highly insecure.   Progress in equality between men and women is at risk if employment opportunities  for women deteriorate and young people everywhere  are wondering where they can find a job”.

Mr. Somavia called  on nations to promote “ productive investment, sustainable enterprises, decent work, fair wages and rising consumption and fiscal income, which lead to growth”.

He said in the next few weeks, the G20 will meet in Toronto and he hopes that “ they will build on the decisions  taken at the summit of Pittsburgh under the leadership of President Obama, when they place  quality jobs at the heart of  recovery”.

The ILO director-general spoke  just before leaders from the real economy- government, labour, emplozers and civil society- prepare to address the impact of the current economic and jobs crises  on employment policy and the Millennium Development Goals ( MDGs) during two high-level panels convened for the conference.


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