Fresh graduates fail to get jobs for over a year: group 

2023-02-03 03:02     BY Yuki Lei    Comment:2

The People Power Macau grassroots group handed a petition to Secretary for Economy and Finance Lei Wai Nong at the Labour Affairs Bureau (DSAL) yesterday to raise its two main concerns and suggestions on residents’ jobless rate and the issue of youth underemployment.

A DSAL official received the petition on Lei’s behalf

Lam Weng loi, secretary-general of the group, told local reporters after handing the letter to the DSAL official that his group has continuously received complaints from fresh local university and college graduates unable to get a full-time job after graduation, adding that some of them have been unemployed for over a year, with some only getting part-time work “occasionally”.

According to Lam, since the gradual recovery of Macau’s economy, the unemployment rate has been easing, but more than 10,000 people were still unemployed.

The Statistic and Census Bureau (DSEC) said in a statement last month that last year’s overall unemployment rate was 3.7 percent, while that of local residents amounted to 4.8 percent, up by 0.8 and 0.9 percentage points year-on-year.

The overall unemployment rate comprises residents and non-resident workers (NRWs).

With the resumption of COVID-19 test-free travel thanks to the improving COVID-19 situation, Macau’s economy is “finally seeing the light of day”, Lam said. However, he pointed out, if the quota of non-resident workers (NRWs) is increased at this time, the job market for residents may be affected.

Lam urged the government not to increase the quota of NRWs, but to strengthen support for residents’ employment opportunities, helping them retrain for future employment. He also urged the government to tackle the “hidden danger” of structural unemployment.

Regarding the concerns that many fresh university and college graduates failing to find a suitable day job even after sending their curriculum vitae many times to prospective employers, finally give up looking for a job and become “hidden youths”, Lam urged the government to pay more attention to the chronic underemployment of local youngsters and set up more vocational training courses, as well as job-matching sessions for them.

“Hidden youths” is a phenomenon which originated in Japan and later spread to Hong Kong. “Hidden youths” have been described as being in a state of social isolation, marginalisation, and being prone to emotional issues, according to the SpringerLink website. 

People Power Macau Secretary-General Lam Weng Ioi talks to reporters yesterday after handing in his group’s petition addressed to Secretary for Economy and Finance Lei Wai Nong to an official of the Labour Affairs Bureau (DSAL).
– Photo: Yuki Lei

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