PhnomPenhPost, Written by Chun Sophal and Hor Hab, Tuesday, 30 September 2008
With thousands of new graduates struggling to find jobs, the government is proposing a centre to link young people to employers
THE government will soon open a job market information centre and career centre to help solve the challenging problem of Khmer youth unemployment, said Var Sim Samrith, the undersecretary of state for the Ministry of Labor on Friday.
“We hope these two new centres will help direct youth to places where they can learn the specific skills needed to meet future job market demands,” said Var Sim Samrith.
Only about 30 percent of new college graduates can find a job, because they have not obtained the specific skills needed to meet employment demands, according to a 2008 study conducted by the BD Link Co on 2,194 youths in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, Sihanoukville, Kampong Cham and Svay Rieng.
Van Sou Ieng, president of the Garment Manufacturers Association in Cambodia, an industry group that represents garment factories, said, “Youths face problems [job finding], because they lack knowledge about jobs and the job market.”
Van Sou Ieng said the government should quickly create an information system about labour demand in each sector in order to ensure that youths are provided with the skills that the labor market demands.
“We don’t want to see so many youths trying to find jobs,” said Van Sou Ieng. “The government should orient education towards the garment, hotel and construction industries.”
In 2006, 92 percent of the 94,310 university students studied service-related fields in Cambodia, five percent majored in business and only three percent in agriculture, according to Ministry of Labour statistics.
Norng Ratana, an associate consultant of BD Link, said the Kingdom’s population was overwhelmingly young.
“We think that the right education provided by public and private institutions combined with the study centre can help youths get a job,” said Norng Ratana.
“I think the current, main challenge for youths is finding a job,” said Norng Ratana.