Monday, May 20, 2024

Political parties must navigate a challenging balancing act when it comes to the labor market

Political parties must navigate a challenging balancing act when it comes to the labor market. On the one hand, they want to create policies that spur job growth and improve working conditions. On the other hand, they need to maintain the support of businesses and investors who are hesitant to embrace regulations that could limit their profits. Additionally, parties must also consider the views of individual workers who have varying needs and priorities. It’s a tough task, but striking the right balance could lead to a prosperous and fair economy for all.

Thailand’s labour market has seen improvement, with unemployment falling to 1.15% in Q4 2022, close to pre-COVID levels, according to the National Economic and Social Development Council. However, concerns remain over the availability of well-paying jobs, particularly for new graduates in a cautious hiring environment, and the question of workers’ wages. Wages have increased but are outpacing inflation, adding to workers’ economic hardships. The rapid revival of Thailand’s tourism market, set to see foreign visitors reach 28 million this year, has resulted in labour shortages and a demand for an additional 10,000 workers across 60 provinces. Efforts to re-skill and up-skill workers could raise incomes, but workers face significant challenges in accessing training opportunities, including the loss of income while attending courses. Political parties have proposed training programmes and wage increases, but business groups have responded with strong opposition to mandatory wage hikes.

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