Allowing Youth to Tuk-Tuk or not Tuk-Tuk: Should Access to Three Wheeler Market in Sri Lanka be Regulated?
The large number of youth being employed as three wheeler drivers in Sri Lanka has concerned policymakers, especially given the widespread labour shortages in the country. The government has tried to intervene in the tuk-tuk market by attempting to impose an age restriction on three-wheeler operators. But is this a smart move? This blog attempts to clarify some myths about the three wheeler market, while weighing in on the debate on whether the government should impose an age restriction on three-wheel drivers.
The presence of a large population of youth not in education, employment, or training (NEETs) is a major cause for concern for Sri Lanka. Worryingly, the country recorded a NEET rate of 26.1% in 2016, above the ILO global average estimate of 21.8%. In this blog, Ashani Abayasekara looks at the factors that increase the likelihood of youth becoming NEET and gives several policy recommendations to improve the situation.
Climate change and related vagaries of weather have increased the vulnerability of the Sri Lankan population to natural disasters. Rural households and livelihoods are more affected by such calamities, which increases the risk of rural families sliding into poverty. As such, Nisha Arunatilake argues that improving the quality of jobs and livelihoods of the rural population is important to build these communities’ resilience to such natural disasters.
The first ever “Labour Demand Survey” in Sri Lanka recorded nearly half a million vacancies in the private sector. A large portion of these vacancies are found to be in routine and non-routine manual jobs. However, most of Sri Lanka’s job-seekers are educated youth, searching for white-collar jobs. This blog discusses “sectoral mismatch” between the demand and supply of labour in Sri Lanka, using LDS data, and looks at ways in which it can be resolved.
According to a study by IPS on ‘Women-owned and Led Micro, Small Medium Enterprises (WMSMEs) in Spice and Coir Sectors of Sri Lanka’, it was found that more than half of the women surveyed, ranked ‘financial concerns’ as the biggest barrier to operating and expanding their businesses. Using the experiences of one such female entrepreneur, this blog illustrates key strategies to encourage and accelerate the gainful participation of WMSMEs in Sri Lanka’s economy through easy and affordable access to finance.