Written answers

Thursday, 3 June 2021

Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment

Job Creation

Photo of Brendan GriffinBrendan Griffin (Kerry, Fine Gael)
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34. To ask the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment his plans to return to full employment; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [30229/21]

Photo of Leo VaradkarLeo Varadkar (Dublin West, Fine Gael)
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The Economic Recovery Plan published on Tuesday sets an ambitious target to exceed pre-crisis employment levels by having 2.5 million people in work by 2024 and in more productive and resilient jobs.

As SMEs account for over two thirds of total employment, a strong focus on indigenous SMEs is critical to a jobs-led recovery. The Government is pursuing a two-pronged recovery approach; a focus on domestic SMEs, whilst leveraging and reinforcing the enormous strength and resilience of the Foreign Direct Investment sector in Ireland and its indispensable contribution to communities across the country.

The twin decarbonisation and digitalisation transition and associated behavioural changes will profoundly alter the economy. Embracing these transitions will also open up substantial new opportunities for businesses and support significant job creation. Automation will have both positive and negative implications, however, the emerging consensus is that more occupations will change than will be automated away. Innovation, collaboration and knowledge are the cornerstone of a sustainable growth model and a prosperous renewed economy equipped to excel in a changing world. The education, training and research sectors will be supported to shift up a gear to rise to the challenge.

Our Economic Recovery plan also commits to further strengthen Ireland’s Skills Framework and architecture to ensure people are supported to secure and remain in sustainable and quality employment through opportunities to reskill and upskill. This will include a comprehensive review of Ireland’s skills strategies and approaches, including the National Skills Strategy 2016-2025; developing a web-based “Skills Platform”, for upskilling and reskilling opportunities; and developing Ireland’s Pact for Skills, between businesses and government, to ensure those with low and no qualifications are not excluded from employment

Accelerating the provision of training, reskilling and upskilling opportunities and increased activation will be pursued through Pathways to Work 2021-2025. We will also work intensively with young people who are at greater risk of long-term unemployment. And as the recovery of the labour market progresses, an increasing focus will be placed on improving labour market participation levels.

The Government is committed to creating the right environment for a jobs-led recovery by helping business become more resilient and agile and supporting people to transition to new jobs in growing sectors of the economy.


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