Cristobal Thompson is the executive director at AMIIF (Asociacion Mexicana de Industrias de Investigacion Farmaceutica). In this article, he introduces us to an exciting new youth program set up to improve unemployment rates in Mexico and how the pharmaceutical industry is getting involved.
The investment in human capital is an element that our sector understands perfectly, thus between 2012 and 2016 the pharmaceutical industry in Mexico employed an average of 93,000 people and continuously supports training programs and the learning of these employees.
One of the new federal administration’s most exciting programs is perhaps Jóvenes Construyendo el Futuro (Youth Building the Future), a training program with which the government expects to benefit 2.3 million young people of ages 18 to 29 who are currently not studying or working.
The plan seeks to “integrate youth into activities of job training; avert youth from unemployment and antisocial behaviours; accelerate the readiness of a cohort of youth for productive activities; and include the private sector in social responsibility activities for the productive development of young people.” The idea is for 70 percent of these young people to be trained by the private sector, 20 percent by the public sector, and the remaining 10 percent by the social sector.
Among OECD member countries, the average number of young people between ages 15 and 29 who don’t study, work, or receive some kind of training (NEET: Youth not in employment, education or training) is 14.2 percent. In Mexico, this number reaches 21.8 percent, which makes us the country with the fourth highest number of NEET. 8.7 percent are men and 34 percent are women. This means that Mexican young women are practically four times as likely as their male counterparts to not study, work, or receive some kind of training.
A few months ago, Jim Yong Kim, former President of the World Bank, emphasized in Foreign Affairs that failing to invest in human capital dramatically weakens a country’s competitiveness in a world in which economies require enormous amounts of talent to sustain their growth. The investment in human capital is an element that our sector understands perfectly, thus between 2012 and 2016 the pharmaceutical industry in Mexico employed an average of 93,000 people and continuously supports training programs and the learning of these employees. Furthermore, investment in human capital is understood beyond the borders of our companies and many of our associate’s social responsibility programs are aimed at developing skills and abilities among diverse sectors of the Mexican population.
This is why Jóvenes Construyendo el Futuro is an unparalleled opportunity for the pharmaceutical industry in Mexico to support and train Mexican youth. A couple of years ago the YouthEconomicOpportunities.org published their Human Capital Report 2015 in which they asked business, in particular, to “re-think its role as a consumer of ‘ready-made’ human capital to proactively seek out, engage and develop people’s potential”. Jóvenes Construyendo el Futuro is going to give us the opportunity to build talent. We all know that talent is the key factor linking innovation, competitiveness and growth.
As I write this, 33 of AMIIF’s associated companies as well as AMIIF itself have registered in the program to welcome young people who are keen to learn. What we find most exciting about this program is that we’re certain that the learning will go both ways.