Sustainable Development Goal 8 is What We Need

May 31, 20199:36 am
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Unemployment remains a serious issue in today’s highly digitised society. A survey in 2018 found that roughly 172 million individuals worldwide were unemployed, about 5 percent of total global working age-population which was 5.7 billion. In 2019 and 2020, global unemployment rate is predicted to stay at the same level. Besides unemployment, decent work and living also arise to be a problem. Although job openings are widely opened across the globe, it is likely that decent job and unemployment will likely take years to solve.  

See also: Poor Working Condition is the New Employment Challenge

However, there might be a way to overcome the decent work and living. the International Labour Organisation in their report has found a new way to provide sustainability at work by applying Sustainable Development Goal 8 (SDG 8). Sustainable work will likely ensure a decent living and job for employees. It means, not only getting better job, sustainable employment will also fix the rate of unemployment that is too high.

According to the latest report from ILO, SDG 8 is not just about full employment but also the quality of that employment. We all know that equality and decent work are the foundations of sustainability development. Therefore, moving towards more inclusive economic growth and decent work is a must.

SDG 8 targets and indicators

There are 12 targets in SDG 8 comprises, each of which has one or more associated indicators. The targets in summary are:

1.   Sustain per capita economic growth in accordance with national circumstances, and 7 percent GDP growth per annum in the least developed countries.

2.   Achieve higher levels of economic productivity through diversification, technological upgrading, and innovation.

3.   Promote development-oriented policies that support productive activities, decent job creation, entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation, and encourage the formalisation and growth of SME.

4.   Improve progressively, through 2030, global resource efficiency in consumption and production, and endeavour to decouple economic growth from environmental degradation.

5.   By 2030, achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all women and men, including young people and persons with disabilities.

6.   By 2020, sustainability reduces the promotion of youth not in employment, education, or training.

7.   Take immediate action to end modern slavery and child labour.

8.   Protect labour rights and promote safe and secure working environments for all workers.

9.   By 2030, devise and implement policies to promote sustainable tourism that creates jobs and promotes local culture and products.

10.  Strengthen the capacity of domestic financial institutions to encourage and expand access to banking, insurance, and financial services for all.

11.  Increase aid for trade support for developing countries.

12.  By 2020, develop and operationalize a global strategy for youth employment and implement the Global Jobs Pact of the ILO.

SDG 8 progress and next steps

According to the WESO report, the progress made from achieving SDG 8 has been slow. It happens due to major gaps both across and within countries. The highlighted challenges are those relating to informal employment, unsustainable consumption, limited access to financial services, risk of unemployment, discrimination against people with disabilities, exclusion of young people from the labour market, wage penalty, and child labour.

Moreover, there should be a clear understanding of the remaining challenges on the basis of further empirical analysis in order to necessarily provide all stakeholders with urgent guidance on how to achieve SDG 8. Thus, these following aspects should be considered and examined more closely in order to achieve the target:

  •  economic diversity and complexity as a driver of productive employment and enterprises,
  •  decent work and innovation,
  •  interrelated roles of government and institutions in shaping trends in productivity,
  •  financial capacity and equality,
  •  failure to regulate international capitals flows more effectively in the aftermath of a financial crisis,
  • how weak political governance prevents compliance with labour market rules, thereby undermining enhancement of human capital sustainable development.

Read also: Decent Work Agenda: ILO’s Study on Microfinance to Fight Poverty