Saturday, January 23, 2021 | ePaper

UNDP launches 'Future of Work Lab' for resilient BD economy

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BSS, Dhaka :
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), in collaboration with its Bangkok Regional Hub, has launched the 'Future of Work Lab' with a view to facilitating South-South cooperation and accelerating Bangladesh towards a more robust economy with consideration of the many challenges it is facing.
The programme was launched through a virtually on Thursday.
UNDP Deputy Resident Representative Van Nguyen delivered the welcome remarks at the session, followed by official inauguration by Kanni Wignaraja, UN Assistant Secretary-General and UNDP Assistant Administrator & Director of the Regional Bureau for Asia and the Pacific, a UNDP press release said on Friday.
"If countries, communities and households are going to have a chance to recover and get back to having a decent and sustainable means of livelihood, then the Future of Work must be addressed and it must be done quickly," said Kanni Wignaraja, mentioning that four key issues frame the agenda for Future of Work - digital transformation, green jobs, reliance of adaptive techniques, and closing the gender gap in jobs.
Located in Bangladesh, the Lab will support the Asia Pacific region. "Its success will very much depend on the partnerships it forms… it requires a network of public and private sector, UN partners such as ILO and the Office of SS, academia and NGOs," said Kanni Wignaraja.
A report titled "Post COVID-19 Jobs and Skills in Bangladesh" was also launched at the session, which identifies 11 high impact sectors where jobs have been lost, and five emerging sectors where new jobs are being created.
Over the next 20 years, huge changes are expected in the Future of Work (FoW) for Bangladesh as automation, artificial intelligence, fourth industrial revolution and other trends, such as the shift to a circular economy, threaten existing jobs in key industries such as garments and textiles.
SDG Integration Lead of UNDP Bangkok Regional Hub, Christine Wellington-Moore and Lead of Future of Work and South- South Cooperation Team at a2i, Asad-Uz-Zaman, jointly made a presentation on Future of Work Lab in Bangladesh.
A recent study commissioned by a2i suggested that due to COVID, about 20.45 million people already lost their jobs in informal sector and SME, transportation, construction, furniture, readymade garments & textile, leather goods & footwear, tourism & hospitality, light engineering, migration, ceramic and real estate & housing sectors. It also shows that by the end of 2021, 3.92 million new jobs will be created in emerging sectors, like agro-food, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, ICT & e-commerce and creative media sectors.

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