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Government aims to bring about revolutionary changes in Ireland’s employment sector

DUBLIN: Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise and Employment, Leo Varadkar said the Government aims to bring about revolutionary changes in the employment sector in Ireland, including health and IT.

Mr. Varadkar pointed out that the COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on Ireland’s productivity. The Tánaiste clarified the Government’s objective of reviving the employment sector during his speech on the second day of the national economic dialogue.

Pandemic dividends

The Minister of Enterprise and Employment said that workers should have a “pandemic-dividend” to increase competitiveness and productivity. He said the Government plans to create about 2.5 million jobs in the next two to three years.

“Essential workers – from doctors, nurses and gardai – to delivery riders and supermarket staff – have got us through this difficult time. And we must do more for them,” Mr. Varadkar said.

The Tánaiste stated that he would introduce new legislation to provide sick pay to almost all workers. The Low Pay Commission has already begun examining how living wages can be implemented in Ireland.

Mr. Varadkar said that several reforms are being implemented “to unleash the potential of remote working, including the right to disconnect and the right to request remote working”.

“I believe these reforms can form part of a pandemic dividend – a positive legacy which can emerge from the hardship and sacrifice endured by the Irish people during the pandemic,” he added.

Right environment is paramount

Varadkar says not all previous jobs will return after the pandemic. “Capacity constraints may emerge quickly in certain areas, especially given the scale of investment required in areas like housing and climate,” he warned.

“We need to put in place forward-looking policies that will create the right environment for an inclusive jobs-led recovery. That means helping business become more resilient and agile.”

“It means increasing Ireland’s competitiveness and productivity, placing a focus on expanding sectors, such as green and digital, life sciences, the creative industries and the health and social care economy,” the Tánaiste explained.

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