Youth are the wealth of the nation, and a vital source of its productivity and creativity. ‘Investment in youth is investment in the future'. Countries all over the world prioritize youth employment in their youth policies.
Currently, the two main economic development trends are globalization and the knowledge economy. Under global competition the flow of international trade, capital, technology, and information is becoming freer and more convenient. The introduction of a large low paid labor force from developing countries is putting middle to high income countries under the pressures of industry relocation, increasing unemployment, and unequal distribution. Cheap goods can no longer be the source of competitiveness for middle or high income economies, which must now rely on knowledge and technology as the source of national competitiveness. Therefore, countries are striving to develop knowledge based industries by raising personnel quality in the face of increasingly fierce international competition.
In order to adapt to the dawn of an era of globalized competition, micro-profits, and accelerating development of knowledge based service industries, businesses are employing people flexibly and internationally, which is reforming labor/management relations and hiring conditions. Temporary work, dispatching, and other non-typical work patterns are increasing; and enterprises are outsourcing labor and making higher demands of highly skilled workers. These and other such trends are impacting development of personnel supply and demand in the labor market. Higher education in Taiwan has been relaxed and expanded to meet needs, which has produced a large number of young people with university degrees, but because employment opportunities have not kept pace, the competitive pressures on young people entering the job market have increased.
Taiwan is currently facing the same process of economic development that the advanced nations once went through . In 1999, the United Nations made August 12 International Youth Day. The theme of the 2003 International Youth Day Assembly was ‘Youth Employment'. Secretary General Kofi Annan introduced the four Es to help youth development: employability, equal opportunities, entrepreneurship and employment creation.
In the conclusion to Taiwan's ‘Youth Policy White Paper', the characteristics of youth today are described as follows: Youth today are a highly educated generation with high ideals, but they face a highly competitive playing field; they are highly interested in taking part in public affairs, but lack opportunities and ways to participate; they are a generation that is highly interested in internationalization; a generation highly aware of leisure; a generation that faces new health safety problems; and a generation that is growing up in an age of sexual equality. Therefore, since Taiwan is faced with an environment of rapid change and challenges, youth issues are both complex and crucial. Apart from actively listening to young people, the government needs to properly plan a youth personnel resources development policy to deal with changing times and the needs of young people.
Updated Date 12-02-15