Caracas, January 17th 2012 (Venezuelanalysis.com) – Over 27,500 Venezuelans have registered in the first two days of the government’s new Knowledge and Work mission, which aims to incorporate over 800,000 unemployed citizens into the labour market within the coming year.
Initial registration for the mission began last Saturday in Caracas, Vargas, and Miranda state, with mobile registration points set up in plazas and offices at the National Institute of Training and Socialist Education (INCES). According to the Vice-president of Production and Economy, Ricardo Menendez, 52% of those who have registered so far are women and 33% are aged between 19 and 30.
“Everyone will have the opportunity to be included in this training process, in order to carry out a deep transformation of the country,” he said.
The mission was announced by the government in May last year during the Workers’ Day celebrations in the capital. Not only does the mission aspire to bring over 800,000 Venezuelans into work this coming year, but the government also hopes to create 3 million jobs before 2018 and slash the country’s unemployment rate, currently at 8.5%.
Based on three main elements, the mission is designed to create full employment, provide training opportunities and to incorporate Venezuelans into projects under construction. The government has also said that through new projects and training, it is hoping to fundamentally change socio-productive relations within the labour market and create “socialist and humanist” work.
Venezuelans registering with the mission can express an interest in the following areas; housing, medical assistance, agriculture and forestry, public works, education, transport, petro-chemistry, gasification, industry, and government projects in the Orinoco oil belt. The government has also said that it will be opening twenty factories across the country throughout the coming year in a bid to industrialise the Venezuelan economy and stimulate jobs.
“The first question we ask the person who is registering [is] what do you want to be? Ok, I want to be an architect, engineer, builder, welder, carpenter, electrician; [this mission] is generating job opportunities and of course, training for each of these jobs,” said Menendez.
Made up of four stages, the second stage of the mission will provide opportunities for professionals to gain further credentials and adequate training for those with no official qualifications. Menendez confirmed that aspirants need not have experience to express an interest in an area of work.
“That’s why there is a training component; university and technical training which will be developed as of March,” he stated.
Speaking to Venezuelan newspaper, Correo del Orinoco, José Gregorio Escobar from Petare, Caracas, said that he had registered with the mission and expressed an interest in training to become an electrician or a welder. The father of four had previously completed his secondary school education with the government’s mission Ribas and said he would be willing to leave Caracas with his family if he were offered work in another state.
“We have never had such a huge opportunity, this is historic,” he said.
Registration points will be closed in Caracas, Miranda and Vargas on the 29th of January and move to the western part of the country and the Andean region. The training stage of the mission, due to begin in March, will be held at 140 INCES sites across the country.