National service for youths on the cards
The government will introduce 'National Service' programme at upazila level in the next fiscal year to train the HSC-passed unemployed youths and recruit them for a two-year term, Finance Minister AMA Muhith said yesterday.
Initially, the programme will be launched in three upazilas and gradually expanded to other upazilas.
Under the project, the youths who have completed HSC will be first trained for six months and then employed in agriculture, social welfare, and housing and public works ministries for one and a half years, Muhith told a press briefing at the National Economic Council (NEC) auditorium.
He said the upcoming budget will have an allocation for the scheme.
The finance minister said the programme has been taken in line with Awami League's election manifesto.
He said the youths would be trained mainly in military education, agriculture and housing works.
Their jobs would be secured as the ministries would not recruit anyone to the posts meant to be filled by the youths, he said.
After two years, they would decide on whether to go for higher education or continue in their current jobs.
The finance minister said the military training would not be compulsory.
Finance ministry sources said the labour ministry's district bureaus would coordinate the efforts in this regard. They will register the unemployed youths.
Yesterday's press briefing was organised to inform journalists about the outcome of the Islamic Development Bank (IDB) conference that the finance minister attended in Turkmenistan last week.
Replying to a question on hike in duties on vehicles, Muhith said, "Everybody knows taxes on cars would go up in the next budget."
He said AL is a people's party that takes populist actions. Since common people cannot afford cars, taxes on the vehicles would rise.
Muhith said the next budget has been termed 'huge', but one year's budget is always bigger than the previous year's. The next one will be even bigger.
He said, "This time we are under pressure. There have to be budgetary mechanisms for offsetting the effects of global recession and also allocations for social security and employment generation. The size of the upcoming budget would be a little bigger as there have to be allocations for new programmes."
Since the government seeks to make the secondary education free, the next budget must have a number of steps to that end, Muhith added.
A proposal was made in parliament to continue budget discussion till July 23 but was turned down.
Muhith said from the next year on, they would try to place the budget at the beginning of June. The government however has no plans to make changes to the budget cycle (July-June).