ASEAN Labour Ministers embrace technology for the future of work

COVID-19 accelerates 2019 Future of Work tech plans.

The Labour Ministers of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) exchanged views on the current and emerging challenges in ASEAN and globally that have impact on the landscape of labour cooperation in the region.

The members affirmed their commitment to collectively prepare for the Future of Work and emphasised this through the timely adoption of the ASEAN Labour Ministers’ Statement on the Future of Work: Embracing Technology for Inclusive and Sustainable Growth at the sidelines of the Singapore Conference on the Future of Work held in Singapore in 2019.

At time Josephine Teo, Minister for Manpower and Second Minister for Home Affairs Singapore stated technology will change the jobs landscape in the region.

“We now know technology creates new jobs even as it causes some to be lost,” she said. “More importantly, all existing jobs are likely to be transformed. However, it is not a given that job quality will improve for everyone.”

During the 2019 Future of Work conference, the ASEAN ministers strengthen the capacity of public and private institutions to prepare workforce for the future of work and better enable them to take advantage of new technology and participate in the global labour market through closer cooperation with industries, improving technical and vocational education training (TVET) standards and using TVET to skill, upskill and reskill.

The ministers also agreed to increase participation of women, people with disabilities, elderly and youth in, including but not limited to science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM)-related careers, by adopting policies, initiatives and trainings on technological skills and digital platforms, for these groups to facilitate their access to decent work.

At the time the ministers agreed to encourage and support efforts of businesses, including micro, SMB-sized enterprises, to invest in decent work according to international standards to harness and manage technology.



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