Workers in processing and manufacturing sector easily lose jobs

As high as 74% of local workers in the processing and manufacturing sector are at risk of losing their jobs due to automation, according to a report by the Party Central Committee’s Economic Commission on the fourth industrial revolution.

The report is cited by the news website VnEconomy as saying that the revolution will have major effects on Vietnam. Elsewhere in Southeast Asia, 54% of workers in the processing and manufacturing sector in the Philippines are facing the same risk, 58% in Thailand, and 67% in Indonesia.

Many workers in Vietnam do manual work in the stages of production which might be automated in the near future.

workers in processing and manufacturing sector easily lose jobs hinh 0
A modern textile machine on display at an exhibition in HCM City. As high as 74% of local workers in the processing and manufacturing sector are at risk of losing their jobs due to automation

The domestic industrial manufacturing sector has undergone a lot of changes, with the mining sector having decline in the past years.

The processing and manufacturing sector has created a large number of jobs. It had 6.6 million workers was in 2010, accounting for 13.5% of the country’s total workforce, and the figure leapt to eight million, 15.3% of the total.

Another report of the Ministry of Science and Technology points out two trends in which the revolution may affect jobs.

First, it may disrupt the structure of the workforce, sending unemployment soaring, due to an increasing presence of robots in manufacturing. New technology may lead to a shift in the nature of work from manual labor to automatic programming and control.

The report says workers on assembly lines would be the first to be affected as they can be easily replaced by robots in almost all stages of production. As such, there would be significant declines in available jobs in the administrative, processing and manufacturing, and construction sectors between 2015 and 2020.

Second, the revolution may create more jobs despite job declines in labor-intensive industries and those requiring low-skilled labor. It may help creative sectors grow and create new jobs.

The Party Central Committee’s Economic Commission said textiles-garments and electronics are labor-intensive industries.

The Saigon Times

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