Co-payment scheme to recruit new graduates falls badly short of target


The government co-payment scheme covering the salaries of new graduates is falling short of its target to generate 260,000 new jobs, said Labour Minister Suchart Chomklin.

The Cabinet has approved a budget of Bt20 billion to spur recruitment of new graduates by paying 50 per cent of their salaries for the first year.

However, only 20,000 new jobs were created under the scheme as of October, said Suchart.

The minister said he would evaluate the effectiveness of the scheme until April, when a fresh batch of new graduates will be seeking jobs. Depending on that evaluation, the scheme’s remaining budget might be transferred to help recruitment in the tourism industry, he added. The tourism sector is currently facing severe impacts from the Covid-19 pandemic.

Suchart suggested the poor response to the scheme was due to major companies preferring to recruit people on long-term contracts during the economic recovery, rather than the year offered under the scheme.

And though the scheme seemed to fit the needs of small and medium-sized enterprises, SMEs were not hiring workers at this time of economic downturn, he added.