With more than 60,000 jobs created in the past year, Ireland has the fastest employment growth rate in the OECD, a review of the Irish Government’s Action Plan for Jobs by the OECD revealed.
The OECD (Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development) said the Action Plan’s focus on private-sector led, export-oriented job creation by getting framework conditions right and continually upgrading the business environment was a sound approach.
Buy-in into the plan at the highest level in Irish government “marks an important innovation in Irish governance,” the OECD said.
“The Action Plan for Jobs’ most striking innovation in the Irish public policy context is a co-ordination mechanism that ensures high-level political buy-in and oversight, whole-of-government engagement and the establishment of quarterly targets underpinned by a robust monitoring system,” said OECD secretary-general Angel Gurría.
“These are important steps towards addressing long-standing gaps that undermine successful policy implementation,” he said.
Future improvements should include introducing a comprehensive performance assessment framework to measure progress towards achieving its strategic objectives, the OECD concluded.
Job creation the top priority
“When we came to office in 2011 after 300,000 jobs had been lost in the previous three years we pledged to make job creation our priority,” the Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton said.
“We immediately commenced implementing our plan to return jobs growth to the economy, and in February 2012, we launched the first Action Plan for Jobs to marshal the efforts of all Government departments and dozens of agencies towards this single goal. The leadership of the Taoiseach and his department have been crucial in this. Since then, the unemployment rate has fallen from 15.1pc to 11.8pc, and in the past year 60,000 jobs have been added across the economy. The plan is working.
“Given the scale of the jobs challenge we face, it is crucial that we continually learn lessons and improve our efforts in this area. That is why we asked the OECD, the globe’s foremost policy think-tank with decades of experience in providing policy recommendations to Governments around the world, to examine the Action Plan for Jobs and provide an assessment of how well it is working and how we can improve things,” Bruton added.