“NINI” stands for “Ni estudia, ni trabaja” (young people who is neither working nor studying).
9 out of 10 young people between the age of 15 and 29 who are unemployed in Mexico have secondary and higher levels of education, which is why promoting investment and generating employment has become a priority task in face of this large, qualified, and yet, improductive segment of the population, according to experts.
Besides the issue with the so-called “ninis” (young people who are neither officially working nor studying), there are 827,324 young people currently unable to find employment in the country, in spite of their competitive levels of study. This number represents a 48.3% of total unemployment in the country, according to the National Survey on Occupation and Employment on the first quarter of 2018.
Unlike the case of ‘ninis’ most young people who are currently unemployed are in need of new job generation for qualified staff and with decent pay. “The situation has come to a point where people with lower education levels and no professional experience are more likely to find a job than those with higher education levels,” stated Héctor Magaña, coordinator of the Business and Economy Research Center at the Monterrey Institute of Technology in the state of Mexico.
“Job training is not the solution here. We need to attract investment that will allow us to create jobs requiring higher levels of expertise so that all these seemingly over-educated people can fill them and get paid better than those with lower education levels,” said the specialist.
Out of the number of unemployed young people between the age of 15 and 29, 346,355 (42%) received a secondary school education (junior high-school level), whereas 480,969 (58%) have a middle and higher education. Most causes for unemployment are: The loss of a previous job (38.8%), and dissatisfaction with a previous job (25.3%).
“It is important that the entire population (young people in particular) should become more engaged in the labor system. An ideal mechanism would be a dual education system: A mechanism that links school learning with the country’s productive needs,” commented José Luis de la Cruz, director of the Industrial Development and Economic Growth Institute.
“An institutional framework should be used to guarantee the sustainability of said engagement on the middle and long term, meaning that the young student’s talents and skills should be linked with the economy’s productive needs; otherwise, they won’t stand a chance in the job market,” added the expert.
Mexico’s new administration will seek to support to 2.6 million young people who are neither studying nor working through education and labor integration programs, representing an investment of 110,000 million pesos. “This proposal might work, but we need to tread lightly and work alongside companies, training institutions, and places that might eventually absorb this new and more qualified workforce. We wouldn’t wand to train these young people randomly without first establishing a framework for their eventual employment. The government will pay for any training required,” commented Jonathan Heath, financial analyst from the private sector.
SMT Newsroom with information from El Universal