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Ensour tours job fair

By Bahaa Al Deen Al Nawas - Nov 20,2015 - Last updated at Nov 20,2015

Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour and members of his Cabinet visit a job fair at Al Hussein Youth City on Thursday (Photo by Raad Adayleh)

AMMAN — Prime Minister Abdullah Ensour on Thursday visited a job fair that forms part of the fourth phase of the National Employment Campaign, and attended the signing of memoranda of understanding (MoUs) related to boosting employment. 

The fourth phase of the campaign, titled “My job — My future”, which began November 15 and ends on November 26, offers 14,000 job opportunities, according to Labour Ministry Secretary General Hamadah Abu Nijmeh.

The 359 companies taking part in the campaign operate in 11 sectors: hospitality, fuel, banks, construction, retail, textiles, industry, health, services, ICT and restaurants.

Labour Minister Nidal Katamine accompanied the premier on his tour of the job fair, held at Amman Grand Hall in Al Hussein Youth City.

At the signing ceremony, Katamine highlighted the challenges faced by the local labour market due to illegal guest workers and the influx of refugees fleeing crises in the region. 

The annual unemployment rate calculated by the Department of Statistics (DoS) at the end of each year stood at 11.9 per cent in 2014, the best figure for the past 10 years, the minister said.

He added that this is the appropriate unemployment rate to observe given temporary fluctuations over the course of the year, such as around university graduation dates.

Nonetheless, unemployment rates are still high and fresh graduates face many hindrances that prevent them from joining the job market, Katamine said. 

He highlighted the limited number of job opportunities, the lack of compatibility between students’ choice of majors and labour market demand, and a decline in the capabilities of fresh graduates as some of the major obstacles. 

Abu Nijmeh said the campaign aims to increase job opportunities in remote areas, boost the participation of women and people with disabilities in the labour market, and fund training and employment programmes.

During the first three phases of the National Employment Campaign, jobs were secured for 100,800 people, 33.9 per cent of whom are women, Abu Nijmeh noted in his presentation, citing statistics from the Social Security Corporation, the Development and Employment Fund (DEF), and private employment offices that sent 13,000 of the total to work abroad. 

The National Employment Campaign began in January 2013 with the goal of creating thousands of jobs for Jordanians in cooperation with the private sector. 

The MoUs signed on Thursday entail training Jordanians in the health sector at public institutions, opening an employment office at the Zarqa Chamber of Industry, and offering training and employment in the tourism sector.  

During his tour of the fair, Ensour spoke with job seekers who came from across the Kingdom as well as representatives of companies participating in the event.

DEF Director General Abdullah Freij told The Jordan Times that the fund spent JD31 million on loans in 2014 that benefited 8,000 projects, which created more job opportunities.

He said the fund’s role is to encourage job seekers, especially young people, to establish their own projects rather than look for office jobs as is usually the norm.

Ghassan E. Abuyaghi, general manager of the Employment, Technical and Vocational Education Training (E-TVET) Fund, said the fund supports institutions that offer training and employment.


He added that its part in the campaign is to get to know these institutions, as well as guide job seekers to the employers that best match their majors and skills. 

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