Building Inclusive Labour Markets in Kazakhstan

A Focus on Youth, Older Workers and People with Disabilities

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Kazakhstan has made major economic and social advances in the past decade and a half. Yet, Kazakhstan needs to sustain high growth rates in the future to converge towards the living standards of OECD countries. This report provides a review of the labour market and social policies that could help Kazakhstan in its dual objectives of building more inclusive labour markets, while maintaining a path of strong growth. It explores the role that institutions and policies play in helping vulnerable groups to access gainful and productive jobs, particularly focusing on three key groups: youth, older workers, and people with disabilities, and provides a comprehensive set of policies to increase the employment and employability of these groups. Evaluations and lessons from innovative experiences in OECD and other countries are used to formulate recommendations tailored to Kazakhstan.


Investing in Kazakhstani youth

With youth unemployment rates among the lowest in the world, Kazakhstani youth do not face high barriers in entering employment. One issue of major concern, however, is job quality, with many young people employed in low-quality, low-paid jobs, often in the informal sector. Within this context, this chapter looks at the demand- and supply-side barriers to good quality job opportunities for youth in Kazakhstan. First, it analyses demand-side barriers to youth employment, with a particular focus on: the cost of hiring; and the employment protection legislation. Second, it discusses the extent to which labour market and social policies support the employability of youth in Kazakhstan, particularly looking at: the role of skills in helping youth gaining access to high-quality jobs; the Public Employment Service and Active Labour Market Programmes to help youth (back) into (formal) work; social protection mechanisms to mitigate the negative consequences of being out of employment; as well as family policies to help youth (and especially young women) better balance family and work responsibilities.


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