Uganda through the ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development has called on all countries that are part of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to join efforts in improving the labour market among member states.
Minister Janat Mukwaya, who led a delegation of Ugandan officials to the 4th session of the Islamic Conference of Labor ministers that happened recently, said that unemployment and underemployment especially among the youth is a key development challenge and threat to peace and stability in OIC states.
She however added the poor state of labour market in these countries should not cause despair but be a strong cause for action.
“Uganda has been addressing unemployment among youth and women through the youth livelihood programme and the Ugandan Women entrepreneurship programme. I advise other OIC secretariat to study these two programs for purpose of adoption with necessary modification in other countries,” Mukwaya said.
The conference which was held in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia on 22nd February 2018 under the theme “Developing a Common Strategy for the Development of the Workforce” was attended by 56 countries and several regional and international organizations.
The Conference considered extensively the state of the labour market in OIC states and the strategies for employment creation.
Consequently, the Conference adopted the OIC Labour Strategy; OIC Mutual Recognition Agreement of Qualifications for Skilled Labour Force; OIC Bilateral Agreement on the Exchange of Labour and the extension of the Islamic Development Bank funded Youth Employment Support Programme (YES) to all countries including Uganda.
Uganda’s Delegation also held meetings with the Delegations of Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar and Jordan on the sidelines of the Conference.
The meetings focused on strengthening cooperation in the promotion of safe and productive labour migration.