Syndicate content


Philippines: Keeping in step with what employers want

Pablo Acosta's picture
Step up to the Jobs Challenge

It is said that some employees are hired because of their technical skills, but fired due to their behaviors or attitudes, such as arriving late or showing a lack of commitment to achieve the firms’ goals. This complaint seems to be frequently mentioned during our many discussions with Filipino employers.
But what does the hard evidence show, beyond anecdotal remarks? Do Filipino employers have difficulty finding workers with the right “soft skills” (socio-emotional skills, right attitudes and behaviors)? And if so, do we have evidence that it leads to better pay? And how are employers, employees and government responding to these labor market signals?

Competitive Cities: A Game Changer for Malaysia

Judy Baker's picture
Photo: mozakim/bigstock

As an upper-middle income country with a majority of its population living in cities, Malaysia is situated among the countries that prove urbanization is key to achieving high-income status. Asking “How can we benefit further from urbanization?” Malaysian policymakers have identified competitive cities as a game changer in the 11th Malaysia Plan. To this end, the World Bank has worked with the government to better understand issues of urbanization and formulate strategies for strengthening the role of cities through the report, “Achieving a System of Competitive Cities in Malaysia.”

While Malaysia’s cities feature strong growth, low poverty rates, and wide coverage of basic services and amenities, challenges still remain. 

Its larger cities are characterized by urban sprawl, particularly in Kuala Lumpur, where population density is low for an Asian metropolis. This inefficient urban form results in high transport costs and negative environmental impacts. This is matched by low economic density, indicating Malaysia’s cities can do better in maximizing the economic benefits from urban agglomeration.  

A second challenge hampering Malaysia’s cities is the highly centralized approach to urban management and service delivery, a system that impedes the local level, and obstructs service delivery and effective implementation of urban and spatial plans.

Third is a growing recognition of the importance of promoting social inclusion to ensure that the benefits of urbanization are widely shared.

แรงงานที่มีทักษะและR&D ที่แข็งแกร่งคือกุญแจสำคัญสำหรับประเทศไทย 4.0

Dilaka Lathapipat's picture
Also available in: English

รัฐบาลไทยได้ริเริ่มนโยบายเศรษฐกิจหลายประการซึ่งล้วนมีศักยภาพให้เศรษฐกิจก้าวต่อไปข้างหน้า เพื่อให้บรรลุการปรับเปลี่ยนด้านโครงสร้างเศรษฐกิจให้สำเร็จนั้น การมีกำลังแรงงานที่มีทักษะและการมียุทธศาสตร์การลงทุนในเรื่องการวิจัยและพัฒนา (R&D) มากขึ้น เป็นสิงจำเป็นอย่างยิ่ง

เป็นเวลากว่าสี่สิบปีที่เศรษฐกิจไทยเคยเติบโตอย่างน่าประทับใจที่ร้อยละ 7.7 แต่ได้ลดลงเหลือร้อยละ 3.3 ในช่วงสิบปีที่ผ่านมาตั้งแต่ปี พ.ศ. 2548-2558 หากประเทศไทยเติบโตเช่นนี้ ต้องใช้เวลากว่ายี่สิบปีเพื่อบรรลุเป้าหมายการก้าวเป็นประเทศที่มีรายได้สูง

รายงานล่าสุดของธนาคารโลก “กลับสู่เส้นทาง: ฟื้นฟูการเติบโตและประกันความมั่งคั่งสำหรับทุกคน” พบว่าเหตุผลหลักที่ทำให้เศรษฐกิจไทยชะลอตัวลงคือการสูญเสียขีดความสามารถในการแข่งขัน

เมื่อสิบปีก่อน สภาเศรษฐกิจโลก (World Economic Forum) ได้จัดอันดับขีดความสามารถในการแข่งขันด้านต่างๆ ของประเทศทั่วโลกพบว่า ประเทศไทยมีขีดความสามารถในการแข่งขันหลายตัที่นำหน้าประเทศเพื่อนบ้านและประเทศที่มีลักษณะใกล้เคียงกันอย่างชัดเจน

แต่ทุกวันนี้ ประเทศที่มีรายได้ระดับปานกลางอื่นๆ ไล่ตามประเทศไทยทัน อีกทั้งหลายประเทศที่มีเศรษฐกิจก้าวหน้าในภูมิภาคยังได้ก้าวนำประเทศไทยไปแล้วในหลายด้าน โดยเฉพาะอย่างยิ่ง ด้านความพร้อมทางเทคโนโลยี การอุดมศึกษาและการฝึกอบรม นวัตกรรม การพัฒนาตลาดการเงิน สถาบัน และความเชี่ยวชาญด้านธุรกิจ

Skilled workforce and strong R&D keys to Thailand 4.0 success

Dilaka Lathapipat's picture
Also available in: ภาษาไทย

Several of the government’s recent economic initiatives have the potential to kick-start Thailand’s economy. To achieve the economic transformation it has been aspiring for, having a skilled workforce and much more strategic investments in research and development (R&D) will be important.

Following nearly four decades of impressive economic growth at 7.7 percent, the Thai economy has slowed sharply to 3.3 percent over the last decade from 2005-2015. At this rate of growth, it would take Thailand well over two decades to achieve high-income status.

A new World Bank report “Getting Back on Track: Reviving Growth and Securing Prosperity for All” cites that a main reason for the slowdown is a loss of competitiveness.

Ten years ago, Thailand was ahead of its neighbors and peers on virtually all the competitiveness indicators tracked by World Economic Forum in its Global Competitiveness rankings.

Today, other middle-income countries have caught up, while more advanced economies in the region have surged further ahead, particularly in technological readiness, higher education and training, innovation, financial market development, institutions, and business sophistication.

Sustainable Growth in Lao PDR Will Lead to Poverty Reduction and Better Lives for All

Victoria Kwakwa's picture

My visit to Lao PDR this week has convinced me that this nation is moving toward the right path to sustained economic growth, which could lead to less poverty and better lives for all of its people.
Over the past two decades, Lao PDR has made significant development progress. It is one of the fastest growing economies in East Asia, with GDP growth averaging 8 percent a year since 2000. Lao PDR also successfully met the Millennium Development Goal of reducing extreme poverty, based on its national poverty line, to below 24 percent by 2015 from 33.5 percent in 2002.
As I have witnessed during my trip, people are enjoying better living conditions, with improved access to water supply, sanitation, roads, and power. Indeed, Lao PDR’s electrification program is one of the most successful in the world, and more than 90 percent of households now have access to electricity. Lao PDR also has built 50 percent more road surfaces in the last decade, and two-thirds of all Lao villages are now connected by all-season roads.

Transformasi struktural Indonesia beri petunjuk di mana lapangan kerja yang bagus

Maria Monica Wihardja's picture
Also available in: English

Pepatah mengatakan “Hidup bagaikan roda – kadang di atas, kadang di bawah”.

Era ‘booming komoditas’ ketika harga minyak mentah, kelapa sawit dan batu bara melambung tinggi sudah berakhir. Sudah seyogyanya hal ini ini menjadi lampu kuning bagi Indonesia, karena peralihan ekonomi ini telah mempengaruhi pertumbuhan lapangan kerja dalam beberapa tahun terakhir. Lalu, bagaimana Indonesia bisa terus menciptakan lapangan kerja baru untuk pencari tenaga kerjanya yang terus bertambah?

Jawabannya ada di sektor manufaktur dan jasa, seperti yang sudah terindikasi oleh pola sejarah yang ada.

Dalam waktu 20 tahun terakhir (di luar era krisis ekonomi di tahun 1997-1999), sektor manufaktur dan jasa menjadi sumber penting lapangan kerja baru di tengah menurunnya jumlah pekerjaan di sektor pertanian. Dari tahun 1999-2015, proporsi pekerjaan di bidang pertanian turun menjadi 34% dari 56%, dari total lapangan kerja, sedangkan sektor jasa mengalami kenaikan menjadi 54% dari 34% dan sektor manufaktur naik dari 10% menjadi 13%. 

Indonesia’s structural transformation offers clues on where to find good jobs

Maria Monica Wihardja's picture
Also available in: Bahasa Indonesia

What goes up must come down.

The end of the commodities boom is a wake-up call for Indonesia, as the reversal in economic transformation has adversely impacted employment growth in recent years. How can Indonesia continue to create jobs for its growing labor force?

Jobs in manufacturing and services offer a solution, as historical patterns of job creation have shown.

In the past 20 years (excluding the economic crisis of 1997-1999), manufacturing and services have been important sources of job creation, while employment in agriculture continues to decline. From 1990 to 2015, jobs in agriculture fell to 34% from 56% of all employment, while service sector work has surged to 53% from 34%, and manufacturing jobs have increased from 10% to 13%.

Solomon Islanders rising up Jacob’s Ladder of opportunity

Evan Wasuka's picture

Geographically, the capital of Solomon Islands, Honiara, is a hilly city, a maze of ridges and valleys.

In front of me, concrete steps descend 30 meters down the face of a ridge, winding their way down in a gravity-defying manner; nothing else stands on the slope, it’s simply too steep.

The steps are part of a system of footpaths that link communities of thousands of people below to the main public road above.

Over the past 60 years as Honiara has developed, so too have informal settlements. These are often located at the bottom of steep valleys without basic services such as roads, water and electricity.

Maintaining momentum in Myanmar

Axel van Trotsenburg's picture

Myanmar is undergoing a historic transition. After decades of armed conflict and economic stagnation, the country is beginning to make important strides toward realizing its potential and the aspirations of its people.

Our engagement in Myanmar started more than 60 years ago when it became a member of the World Bank, soon after gaining independence from British rule.

Back in 1955, the Bank’s first economic report stated: “the lack of security remains a disrupting influence on the economic life of the country” while “the long term economic potentials are bright” on account of its moderate population growth and abundant natural resources. It also noted the importance of “encouraging private sector enterprise to improve the standard of living of the people”— these are topics that continue to resonate in today’s development discourse.

In the early 1950s, Myanmar’s GDP per-capita was comparable to that of Thailand, Korea, and Indonesia.  Like others in the region, Myanmar was coming out from colonial rule and a period of struggle. Sixty years on, Myanmar has a per capita GDP just above $1,100, less than one third the average for ASEAN countries and one of the lowest in East Asia.

The good news is that Myanmar has begun the catch up process. Major political and economic reforms since 2011 have increased civil liberties, reduced armed conflict, and removed constraints to trade and private enterprise that long held back the economy.

Realizing the hopes of unemployed youth in Papua New Guinea

Walai Punena Jacklyn Tongia's picture

I met Gilford Jirigani at a workshop in Port Moresby a few months ago. What struck me about him was his natural confidence and poise as he captured the audience’s attention - including mine-as he told us how one project changed his life. He went from being an unemployed kid, down and out and unclear about his life in the city, to eventually becoming one of the pioneers of a youth program aimed at increasing the employability of unemployed youth in Port Moresby in 2012.