The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors today approved a USD 20 million IDA credit facility for the Mongolia Emergency Support and Employment Support Project. The project will provide temporary relief to eligible workers and employers in response to the COVID-19 crisis and help provide the country’s jobseekers and micro-entrepreneurs with improved access to labor market opportunities.
In Mongolia, there is a close link between employment and poverty: the highest levels of poverty are among those without productive and well-paying jobs. The country has long suffered from limited job opportunities, particularly for young people and vulnerable groups with little work experience. In addition, poor labour-market transparency and inaccurate data present challenges for jobseekers.
The economic downturn due to the COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated these challenges with an increased likelihood of layoffs, fewer jobs, and lower wages for the Mongolian workforce.
The project will support the government’s COVID-19 relief measures which provide temporary social insurance contribution relief for eligible employers and their workers under the mandatory social insurance scheme.
Expanding income opportunities towards more productive microenterprises and self-employment could lessen chronic unemployment and the lack of labour demand which has been made worse by the COVID-19 crisis. For this, financial and nonfinancial support will be provided to help micro-entrepreneurs start and expand their businesses. The project will also pilot an innovative skills promotion programme that will help jobseekers gain skills demanded by employers.
The project will also support upgrading of selected labour and social welfare institutions to help jobseekers find jobs more efficiently. Activities will include the modernization of physical infrastructure, streamlined work organizations, improvements to information systems, and better use of labour market information in decision making. In addition, it will finance activities to improve the scope, quality, and availability of labour market information for all users.