ILO / COVID-19 LABOUR MARKETS

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27-Oct-2021 00:03:33
A new International Labour Organization (ILO) report found that the loss of working hours in 2021 because of the pandemic will be significantly higher than previously estimated, as a two-speed recovery between developed and developing nations threatens the global economy as a whole. ILO

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STORY: ILO / COVID-19 LABOUR MARKETS
TRT: 3:33
SOURCE: UNTV CH
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 27 OCTOBER 2021, GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

SHOTLIST:

FILE – SEPTEMBER 2019, GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

1. Various shots, exterior of ILO headquarters

27 OCTOBER 2021, GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

2. SOUNDBITE (English) Guy Ryder, Director-General, International Labour Ogranization (ILO):
“Labour market recovery, global labour market recovery in the course of this year 2021, has actually stalled. It is flatlining and that means that our estimates for the year in its entirety is that the hours actually worked this year will still be 4.3 per cent below what were being worked pre-pandemic, in the last quarter of 2019.
So, you know, we're looking at a global economy which looks like it's bouncing back; five per cent growth or more. And yet labour markets are not getting back to where they were, and the deficit is very substantial. That's the first message.
The second message is about the unevenness of the experience of recovery. What are we seeing? We're seeing - and I'm simplifying slightly – we’re seeing the rich world, and I would add China to that, bouncing back quite strongly. They are seeing a recovery which is significant.
And yet for the emerging and the developing world, that is not the case. They are really not growing and in some cases are going backwards. And so, we're seeing evidence of what we call a great divergence. The rich world doing relatively well, but regrettably, the developing and emerging countries really going nowhere. And this should be a matter of the greatest concern to policymakers.
Why is it happening? Well, I think there are two very obvious reasons which we highlight in the report. The first, and let's not forget this all started with the health emergency, is about the unequal rollout of vaccination programmes.
This is well known. The high-income countries are now able to insure quite high levels of vaccination for their populations. The same is simply not true of the developing world. The differences are massive, and this affects the recovery process in labour markets because getting vaccinated is in some way a precondition for opening up enterprises and getting moving again. So, we have to act on vaccinations.
The second, and it acts in exactly the same way, is about the uneven fiscal space available to different countries. We know that over 16 trillion USD has been spent around the world in economic and social response to the pandemic. But nearly all of that, the vast majority of those resources have been spent by rich countries on rich countries. And so, they're able to boost their economies and get moving again.
So those are the two, I think, major factors underlying this great divergence and then the response, it seems to me, identifies itself. We need greater international cooperation, - and let me say solidarity - in ensuring a much more equal roll out of vaccinations.
At the moment, we are not building back better, contrary to the commitments of the international community has made, and we need to put that right.
3. Wide shot, Ryder speaking to Sangheon Lee, Director of the ILO Employment Policy Department prior to press conference
4. Med shot, Ryder speaking to reporters at press conference
5. Med shot, Sangheon Lee, Director of the ILO Employment Policy Department speaking to reporters
6. Pan left, press room

STORYLINE:

A new International Labour Organization (ILO) report found that the loss of working hours in 2021 because of the pandemic will be significantly higher than previously estimated, as a two-speed recovery between developed and developing nations threatens the global economy as a whole.

Releasing today (27 Oct) the eighth edition of the ILO Monitor report - COVID-19 and the world of work, ILO Director-General Guy Ryder said global labour market recovery has stalled, meaning the ILO now estimates that the hours actually worked for all of 2021 will still be 4.3 per cent below pre-pandemic levels.

Ryder said, “We're looking at a global economy which looks like it's bouncing back; five per cent growth or more. And yet labour markets are not getting back to where they were, and the deficit is very substantial.”

The ILO Director-General also noted the “unevenness” of the economic recovery. He said, “We're seeing - and I'm simplifying slightly – we’re seeing the rich world, and I would add China to that, bouncing back quite strongly. They are seeing a recovery which is significant.
And yet for the emerging and the developing world, that is not the case. They are really not growing and in some cases are going backwards. And so, we're seeing evidence of what we call a great divergence. The rich world doing relatively well, but regrettably, the developing and emerging countries really going nowhere. And this should be a matter of the greatest concern to policymakers.”

Ryder said there were two “very obvious reasons” for this divergence highlighted in the report. The first, he said, is the unequal rollout of vaccination programmes. He added, “The high-income countries are now able to insure quite high levels of vaccination for their populations. The same is simply not true of the developing world. The differences are massive, and this affects the recovery process in labour markets because getting vaccinated is in some way a precondition for opening up enterprises and getting moving again. So, we have to act on vaccinations.”

Ryder said the second reason is “the uneven fiscal space available to different countries.” He said over 16 trillion USD has been spent around the world in economic and social response to the pandemic, but “nearly all of that, the vast majority of those resources have been spent by rich countries on rich countries.” This has enabled rich countries to boost their economies.

The ILO Director-General stressed the need for greater international cooperation and solidarity in ensuring a much more equal roll out of vaccinations. He said, “At the moment, we are not building back better, contrary to the commitments of the international community has made, and we need to put that right.”
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