National Employment Policy

Samoa National Employment Policy 2021/2022 - 2026/2027 training for Stakeholders and the Implementing Partners ahead of it’s launching on 7 November 2022

Samoa has recently adopted its second Samoa National Employment Policy (SNEP-2) 2021/2022 - 2025/2026 focusing on promoting integrated policy interventions to ensure job-rich recovery from the impact of the Covid-19 crisis.

News | Apia, Samoa | 06 November 2022
Seminar participants, Apia, Samoa. © ILO
APIA, Samoa (ILO News) - ILO in partnership with the Government of Samoa held a 2-day capacity building seminar to support constituents and other national stakeholders to undertake measures supporting the implementation of the SNEP-2 over the next five-year cycle. The seminar aimed to strengthen the governance capacity and management for the implementation of the SNEP2. During the seminar, participants explored different approaches to implementation based on national dialogue.

The outcome of the dialogue is to layout a roadmap for coordination and implementation across line ministries and social partners. The Employment Policy is one of ILO's technical assistance programmes for member state through employment specialists to provide concerted and coherent vision and framework linking to employment objectives in Samoa Development Pathway 2021 - 2027.

The first Samoa Employment Policy (2016-2020) considered as one of the most important avenues that translated the findings derived from labour statistics in terms of employment, and underemployment. The information about the status of labour demand and supply were converted into evidenced-formed policy making. However, Ministry of Commerce Industry and Labour and implementing partners find it difficult to implement. as the Evidence from the SNEP-1 review found that one of the concerns that had hampered the implementation was associated with resources, capacity, over ambitious and lack of coordination.

The SNEP-2 was approved by Cabinet in early September this year, after two years of consultations, debates, review and validated by constituents and the Cabinet Policy Committee were finalized by the Ministry of Commerce Industry and Labour before ILO made a final review. The SNEP-2 was developed based on national consultation, as it needs to assist the constituents in the socio-economic recovery from COVID-19 impacts, and addresses challenges to ensure readiness to support the labour market from the disruptions affecting employment and incomes. This involves stimulating the economy to generate decent jobs and possible fiscal assistance to be provided by development partners and government to those who have lost their jobs due the crisis.

Launch event, Apia, Samoa. © ILO
With the newly adopted SNEP-2, ILO was asked to deliver a capacity building and refresher seminar for national stakeholders and implementing partners to better understand their role and contributions of set priorities while streamline the process to achieve the workplan. As stated by the Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Samoa National Tripartite Forum in his open remarks,  “The training is very timely with the launching of the SNEP in November as the intention of the Ministry’s is for the key implementing agencies, stakeholder partners to realize the importance of collective efforts through working in partnership to ensure the successful on thisSNEP-2. Hence it is great time to revisit, refresh and building of the capacity of partners and Government officials on their role in the SNEP-2 implementation.”

The Seminar was conducted by the ILO Senior Specialist on Employment Policy and Decent Work; Mr. Kinan Bahnassi from the ILO Office for Pacific Island Countries in Suva. Mr Bahnassi said “The aim is to strengthen the governance capacity and management for the implementation of the SNEP-2. The Outcome of the seminar is for the participants to: (i) understand the implementation required to meet the SNEP-2 objectives and interventions; (ii) discuss SNEP-2 strategies and agree on the modality/ approach of implementation; (iii) plan and control the policy implementation over multiple phases; (iv) enhance the capacity of the SNEP-2 to adapt to anticipated and unanticipated conditions; (v) strengthening coordination and policy coherence; and (vi) learn about best practices and lessons learned.” The target audiences were mainly the implemented partners in the SNEP-2 Framework; the relevant government ministries and national authorities, the representatives of workers and employers, the representatives of youth, women and civil societies and also the academic institutions and think tanks.

Matin Karimli, Director ILO Office for Pacific Island Countries, emphasized the importance of strengthening national economies in the Pacific to help reactivated labor markets and getting people back to work with some protection measure. He also encouraged Samoa to work towards safeguarding itself against labour market vulnerabilities that were revealed during the crisis and addressing trends shaping the world of work, including climate change to build more resilient economy. This requires implementing the national employment policies towards promoting a more job-rich and resilient recovery. He reassured Samoa implementing partners of NEP that transferring the priorities into practice need a solid commitment and coordination from all actors involved, with extensive effort to define roles and responsibilities by a well-coordinated governance structure; in that regards he agreed that Samoa have that good structure.

The seminar ran for 2 days and was well participated by all relevant stakeholders with key outcomes the ILO will use to prepare Samoa's position paper on the implementation process as requested by the leading agency: the Ministry of Commerce Industry and Labour.