4.BBF - Panel no. 5 : Investing in education is the most profitable and a prerequisite for economic development
Human capital as the backbone of economic development - the challenge of labor force outflow and ways to overcome it through education, was discussed by prof. Dr. Mijat Jocović, Dean of the Faculty of Economics of the University of Montenegro, Aleksandar Rakočević, assistant director of the Employment Office, Jelena Vuletić, founder of DOO "Balance 2 business" and member of the Management Board of the Mortgage Bank for Risks, and businessman Muzafer Ljuca from Bijelo Polje.
Mijat Jocović pointed out that it is good to talk about investments in the north, because without it there are no new jobs and prevention of migration.
- Migration is a historical cycle and it happens in many countries. Young people leave MNEs for several reasons, and one of the main ones is insufficient competitiveness of our economy, which will be a particular problem with EU membership - said Jocović.
That's why. he concludes, the competitiveness of the economy should be strengthened and in that way migrations, which cannot be completely prevented, should be mitigated.
- We have a deficit in the import of goods, and a surplus in the export of labor, and our personnel are not semi-finished products but finished products. We should work to ensure that young people come back and promote the examples of those who have done it - the dean believes.
He emphasizes that investing in education is the most profitable and a condition for economic development.
- I think that the focus of policy makers should be on secondary vocational education, following the example of positive examples from the environment, especially Slovenia, which harmonized dual education with the needs of the labor market - he states, adding that the solution of free higher education should be reconsidered, which did not provide adequate results.
Aleksandar Rakočević pointed out the complexity of the situation on the labor market, where there are around 40,000 unemployed people who in a large percentage do not meet the needs of employers. He believes that the biggest challenge is not the unwillingness of the unemployed to move and not meeting the needs of the seasonality of our economy.
- Education is not fully aligned with the needs of the labor market. Dual education must be improved and the needs of employers must be taken into account even more - assesses Rakočević.
That is why, he says, we must improve the education system and the labor market.
- Secondary vocational education is the foundation of the development of society - said Rakočević and presented the adult education programs implemented by the Institute and which have given good results in the development of people's skills on their records.
- Employers' interest in participating in personnel training is increasing. It is necessary to develop key competencies because education improves by acquiring new skills - he said.
Jelena Vuletić believes that young people are a very important topic because without them there is no economic progress.
- It is necessary to prepare young people for business environments by improving their "soft skills". More than 120 young people, students in their final year of college who want to improve themselves, have gone through our Student Business Hub program. Through the communication I have with them, we have training on how to coordinate, communicate, make decisions, develop critical thinking, set priorities - she explained.
He assesses that young people have insufficient self-confidence, the absence of a clear vision and goal is noticeable. In a very short period of time, they are eager for numerous different experiences. They stay for a short time, and the material side is also important to them.
Muzafer Ljuca, a businessman who has been engaged in private business in Bijelo Polje for over three decades, presented his company Mikromont, which has 50 employees and a specific activity as it offers products related to energy efficiency.
He made a review of everything that our country has been through since the collapse of the SFRY until today, which has had consequences on the economy.
- Doing business was extremely difficult, but fortunately we are still going, for which it was necessary to have a lot of courage. Unfortunately, institutions were disappearing in that whirlwind, and one of them is the education system. Once upon a time, good schools produced great craftsmen who produced impressive results. The conditions for training new personnel in specific occupations were getting worse. Primacy was taken by the desire for people to deal with jobs that did not create new values, and there was rarely a focus on the real economy - Ljuca said.
He emphasizes that in such circumstances, they were forced to manage and create education, seminars and training with the help of the ZZZCG in order to find a qualified workforce themselves.
- There is a constant "thirst" for highly skilled staff, and this will certainly be a problem in the future - he stated.
At the end, Ljuca made a clear appeal to the decision makers.
- I appeal to the state to stop being the biggest employer in Montenegro. It is necessary to devote much more energy to the economy, which is the best way to raise people's standards - he concluded.