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Minister's speech at the 104th International Labour Conference

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10 June 2015 10:00 am, Geneva Switzerland

Madam President and distinguished delegates!

Globally,
our growth engine is losing its steam
and the economy is losing
its job creation capacity.

Consequently,
the world now is troubled with
unemployment of over 200 million.

It is also worth noting that
employment types will become
more diversified.

And,
it is all the more worrisome that
inequality will only get worse
in the future according to forecast.
At this critical juncture,
discussing our future tasks
at this Conference
for 2019 ILO “Centenary Initiative”
carries a significant meaning.

I am sure
it will help us predict the future of work
and the prediction will lay a foundation
for tripartite constituents
to work together for a better future of work.

Just like other countries,
Korea is also undergoing economic
and social changes.

The economy and employment are slowing,
global competition is increasing
and the population is ageing.

In addition,
Korea recognizes
the need to improve
our outdated labor market structure.

Especially,
seniority-based wage system,
long-working hours,
and inefficient labor market regulations are aggravating youth unemployment,
lack of decent jobs,
and labor market inequality.

In response to these challenges,
the Korean government embarked on
reforming the labor market.

Firstly,
the government is focusing on
sharing economic gains
between large companies and SMEs
and reducing the gap
between regular- and non-regular workers.

To this end,
we plan to encourage conglomerates
to spend a part of their profits
on improving working conditions
of workers at SMEs.

In addition,
we will step up efforts
to eliminate unfair business practices
to strengthen a foundation
for sustainable growth.

Secondly,
the government aims to expand
competency-oriented recruitment for youth
so as to help them easily find right jobs
for their talent and aptitude.

Efforts will be also put to make sure that
fairness is fully respected at workplaces.

Under such environment,
workers will be rewarded for their work
and promoted
according to their competency andachievements.
 
Furthermore,
the government is actively promoting
a work-study dual system
to nurture talents required by businesses.

Under the system,
businesses provide hands-on training
for student-workers at workplaces.

Thirdly,
the government set ‘work-family balance’
as one of the key national agenda
in order to fully unleash
the potential of female workers.

The government is expanding
support for the reduced working hours for childcare
as well as increasing child-care centers.

On top of that,
for female workers
whose career is discontinued,
customized employment services are in place
to support their reemployment
along with efforts to increase
decent part-time jobs.
 
Last but not least,
the Korean government aims to
further expand and enhance
its social safety net.

Protection will be strengthened
for vulnerable groups
by eliminating blind spots
in social insurance programs.

With a purpose to improve
income distribution,
the minimum wage will be increased
stage-by-stage.

Madam President and distinguisheddelegates!

As stated,
the Korean government is
determined to foster
a new employment framework
for workers, jobseekers,
and even the future generations.

We envision the future
where parents, sons, and daughters
share equal job opportunities.

There is a saying,
“If you want to go fast, go alone.
If you want to go far, go together.”

We need to cooperate with each other
and grow together in the world of work
in order to achieve sustainable growth.

When the tripartite constituents
from member countries work together,
I am certain that
we will achieve a better future of work.

I hope the 104th ILC becomes a venue
to share experience and wisdom
of member countries
and to proactively engage in discussions
on future plans.

Thank you.

Last Modifide Date   :   Mon June 22, 2015
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