AUSTRIA: The definition of "productive employment" in the document gives rise to a serious misconception as it seems to suggest that the reduction of unemployment will lead to reduction of poverty. But the current demographic changes and the access by women to productive employment indicate that unless the problem of unemployment is fully resolved, the problem of productive employment will not be fully addressed. The Summit should set a minimum level that needs to be achieved, at least 2%.
INDIA: Productive employment is a basic individual right since it not only provides a wage but is also an expression of self-fulfillment and dignity. The Summit should address full employment, as it is a concern of both the developed and developing countries. Unemployment may be inversely related to the level of wages, but it has persisted with growth in all countries because modern growth is technology-based and higher technology is based on saving labor rather than saving the land-based resources. To ensure productive employment: small business must be encouraged; entrepreneurship and asset-holding should be wide-based; decentralized market support infrastructures should be provided; land reforms and the informal sector should be supported; and policies should be gender-sensitive.
SWEDEN: While the Summit explores new territories, it should not ignore what is already covered by other UN agencies on social justice and development. To ensure productive employment the policies must: be gender-sensitive, particularly by focusing on the education of women and girls in order to reduce illiteracy; eliminate child labor; and provide an international framework for social justice clarifying responsibilities and ensuring international cooperation. The ILO could be a follow-up mechanism for the Summit.
ZIMBABWE: The activities and policies that would promote productive employment include: the establishment of credit and land-distribution schemes; providing adequate pricing mechanisms; addressing trade, the external debt, technology transfers and the current structural adjustment programmes in relation to women; and reinforcing international cooperation and solidarity.
AUSTRALIA: A principle requirement in attaining full employment is a conducive economic environment for employment and growth. The ILO and UNDP could prepare a paper on this topic, based on five central themes: increases in private and public investment using labor-intensive technologies; training; development of small businesses; fair wages and work conditions with wages relating to income distribution; and flexible work schedules.
GREECE (ON BEHALF OF THE EU): The basic elements of the policies should: pay attention to structural policies and employment; focus efforts on new sources of job creation linked to the quality of life and protection of the environment; promote research and development and small- and medium-sized enterprises; ensure a stable framework for investment, training, and use of flex time.
REPUBLIC OF KOREA: There is a need to improve labor markets, improve information channels to combine labor flexibility with economic security, and secure adequate public information services.
CHINA: The expansion of employment based on economic development policies that promote small- and medium-sized enterprises, and employment based on education and training, is necessary.
GUINEA: Governments must: provide credit facilities for small- and medium-sized enterprises and cooperatives; provide training; a favorable institutional and legal framework; support NGOs; foster a dynamic private sector; carry out sectoral programmes with high labor intensity, especially in food production; direct external multilateral assistance; and give priority to unemployed graduates and workers affected by down-sizing.
US: Since productive employment depends on a nation's workforce skills, training and education are necessary, as well as information on the job market. Productive employment requires the creation of high performance workplaces.
ROMANIA: In addition to establishing small- and medium-sized enterprises, fiscal and credit policies must be promoted; vocational training must be adapted to technological demands; better management, flex time and part-time work for women must be encouraged.
FRANCE: Jobs of social usefulness are necessary. This includes jobs that involve helping the elderly and families, maintaining buildings in urban areas and environmental protection.
FINLAND: Important areas like health have not received as much attention as education in discussing productive employment.
MALAYSIA suggested programmes for productive employment such as private sector investment and human resource development.
THE HOLY SEE: Training is crucial to promote skills literacy for youth and the long-term unemployed.
DENMARK: The WSSD should be a forum for nations to exchange information on similar problems and ideas on productive employment.
TURKEY supported India on unleashing potential through information technologies and agreed with Australia for an ILO study-paper.
EL SALVADOR: There is a need for an analysis of unemployment in rural and urban areas and for the private sector to aid in job creation.
BRAZIL disagreed with Austria on setting a numerical goal for unemployment and in redefining productive employment.
C"TE D'IVOIRE: Structural adjustment has caused the closure of some state-run enterprises, causing unemployment.
MEXICO: It is necessary to retrain workers for jobs in other sectors and that it is necessary to work closely with ILO.
COLOMBIA said that "parallel economies" of marginalized groups are low in productivity and that there must be minimum social security.
SENEGAL: Productive employment must take into account parameters for new international partnerships and urged UNDP and ILO to prepare documents that would link the three core issues.
MALI urged the creation of an environment favoring motivation and retention of highly skilled workers.
GERMANY supported the statement of Greece on behalf of the EU and urged input from the March 1994 G-7 "Job Summit" into the WSSD.
PAKISTAN said that international targets, as suggested by Austria, are difficult to set, since unemployment is relative to certain sectors, such as rural areas.
Delegates were asked to discuss the topic of the enabling economic environment and the declaration. However, many continued to raise issues related to the three core issues as well. Paragraphs 3, 4 and 6 of Working Paper No. 1 suggest that the declaration should: focus on general principles and policy issues; treat the three core issues in the same order as in the General Assembly resolution; respond in particular to the first two objectives of the Summit (further the objectives of the Charter of the UN and express shared world-view commitment to put people in the centre of development and international cooperation). The paragraphs also describe the nature of the previous declarations relating to social development. Working Paper No. 1/Add. 1 states in paragraphs 3, 4 and 6 that only views and proposals which differ from the elements included in Working Paper No. 1, or that propose a different emphasis, have been included. Proposals for the outcome of the Summit include a declaration and a programme of action, as mentioned in Working Paper No. 1, and that the outcome of the WSSD should be an Agenda for People, taking into account forthcoming UN conferences, including the 50th Anniversary of the UN and the Agenda for Development.
GREECE: The three core issues should be addressed on an equal footing. The declaration should contain a preamble, principles and objectives section, and a section dealing with implementation.
AUSTRALIA suggested five themes to be addressed within the context of the enabling economic environment: the importance of favorable trade and financial environments; the importance of national macro-economic policies; the need to revise national public expenditure priorities; the role of the taxation system; and national accounting procedures that take into account environmental and human impacts.
THE NETHERLANDS: A new concept of "human security" must be developed to deal with basic survival issues such as housing, health and food security.
SWITZERLAND endorsed the new concept of human security as proposed by the Netherlands, and called for more attention to the need to expand investment in human resources.
ALGERIA, on behalf of the G-77 and China, called for increased attention to the special problems of Africa.
FINLAND: A study should be undertaken by the Secretariat to assess monitoring methodologies, and endorsed the concept of human security. The traditional concept of security based on military premises, should take into account human values. He added that larger machinery is needed to deal with the issues being addressed.
DENMARK: The root of future threats to peace are no longer military and political, but related to environmental, social and religious problems.
INDIA: A bottom-up approach to social development is needed with people at the centre at all times. The concept of human rights must be redefined to take into account the right to basic human dignity.
CANADA: An element must be added in the declaration that captures the consensus of the vision of the desired world. The programme of action should set out the parameters of the enabling environment with an emphasis on the social dimensions as well.
THE HOLY SEE agreed with the concept of human security with two reservations: social development must be stressed; the poor must not be referred to as challenges to our lifestyle.
BENIN: All the various UN action plans must be synthesized to ensure implementation of the goals of Rio, the Agenda for Peace, the Human Rights Conference, and the WSSD.
US: The enabling environment in which all countries make decisions on social policy is larger than economics.
Some observers have noted that many delegations have not responded to PrepCom Chair Juan Somav�a's call for concrete proposals. This is due in part to the fact that delegations may have had different expectations for this session and did not come with sufficient instructions from national capitals to make substantive proposals. Another problem has been the fact that many key G-77 members have been drawn away from this process by the other meetings during this session on climate change (INC-9) in Geneva and the Japanese/Malaysian-hosted preparatory meeting on finance in Kuala Lumpur. Some delegates are also concerned that the symptoms of poverty are being addressed instead of focusing on the core problem: an economic model that is based on policies that are exclusive.
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