Government Communication Unit, 28 June 2012 13:31
Tallinn, Stenbock House, 28 June 2012
The cabinet decided at today’s sitting to form a task force for making people’s skills more compatible with the changes on the job market, designed to bring long-term unemployed young people back to the workforce and reduce the number of people on the job market who lack specialized education.
To achieve the objective, the task force is charged with finding rapid solutions to increase the synergy, efficacy and availability of assistance schemes aimed at individuals.
Since 2008, the state has channelled an estimated 25 million euros a year into adult education, but the changes in quality on the job market have been more modest than expected. The number of participants in lifelong learning has seen strong growth, but the share of people with specialized skills in the workforce has not increased. A concern is the fact that the percentage of people who lack specialized education is highest precisely in the younger age groups. The figure is 28 percent for those 45-54 years of age, but 34 percent in the 25-34 age group. People without specialised education are clearly at a disadvantage in competitiveness.
Yet specialized education is not in itself an asset if it is not needed in the workforce or if people who have completed curricula and acquired skills are still not utilized. Labour market services such as retraining are not reaching the people who need them the most. One reason for this is the low level of cooperation between government departments. Each ministry attends only to its narrow target group. There is a lack of a big picture, and often the opportunities created by other ministries are not used. Thus the use of resources proceeds in an unreasonable manner.
In accordance with today’s government decision, the task force will be made up of representatives from the Ministry of Education and Research, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications, Ministry of Social Affairs, Ministry of Finance and Ministry of the Interior as well as from Innove Foundation, Estonian Qualifications Authority, Enterprise Estonia, the Association of Rural Municipalities of Estonia and the Association of Cities of Estonia. The task force’s work will be coordinated by the Government Office.