During the first quarter of the year, manufacturing was the first industry to turn on its engines to produce and resume the hiring of people. With more than 92,000 places, it was the sector that created the most suitable employment out of the 243,609 new jobs that were generated at the national level.
The call to the Popular Consultation and the recent announcements of measures by the Government to reactivate the economy were, according to Caterina Costa, president of the Chamber of Industries of Guayaquil (CIG), the main factors that allowed improving market conditions and with it the spirit so that in this new year more companies return to invest and hire labor. Costa does not yet have the details of the segments that generated the most contracts, but dares to say that many of them are linked to the export industry and the construction sector. The announcement of the elimination of the Goodwill Law, for example, also served as a stimulus for the industry that provides materials to this sector. “We talk about iron, cement, ceramics, electrical materials and a myriad of industries.”
According to the National Institute of Statistics and Census (INEC), in March of this year the rate of adequate employment closed at 41%, versus 38% last year. The same decline was underemployment, whose rate fell from 21.4% to 18.3%.
To the best disposition that the companies have had to contract, says Alfredo Hoyos, manager of Porconecu, it is also necessary to add the factor of conjuncture in some productive sectors. The high banana export season that was experienced in the first months of the year, he says, made plastics industries like his reactivate its supply of inputs for this productive sector. In his case, he says, he had to hire 20 more people.
Hoyos, who also serves as president of the Ecuadorian Association of Plastics (Aseplas), speaks of the need to generate new incentives for companies to continue hiring. For him there is no other recipe to continue boosting market demand and that, he says, is achieved by signing new business agreements.
Costa is more positive. She prefers to believe that companies will be encouraged and will continue to intensify their rate of hiring in the coming months, as the government is landing its offers to inject more dynamics in the productive sector. The sector not only keeps expectations because some tax incentives are materialized, but also because the paperwork that would allow them to be more efficient and competitive is simplified. An exit to counteract the unemployment rate in the country, which this year reached 4%, equal to the percentage registered in 2017. (I)