NAIROBI, May 10 (Xinhua) -- Kenya plans to register job seekers in order to reduce the unemployment rate in the country, officials said on Friday.
Speaking to journalists in Nairobi, Winnie Pertet, chairperson of Kenyan National Employment Authority (NEA) said that the country's unemployment rate currently stood at approximately 13 percent while the underemployment rate was at 23 percent.
"The online registry will help to connect job seekers to employers so that the level of unemployment in Kenya is reduced," Pertet said.
The chairperson noted that a key contributor of unemployment is lack of awareness of available job opportunities.
She added that Kenya plans to accelerate economic development by increasing opportunities for formal employment and self-employment.
The employment regulator plans to connect at least 14,000 job seekers to employers in 2019 and hopes to increase the figure gradually every year.
Pertet added that one of the drivers of high unemployment rate is the mismatch in skills in the labor market.
"The tertiary institutions are producing graduates with skills with little demand in the market, making employers find it difficult to fill job vacancies," she added.
The NEA noted that technology has both been a blessing and curse to the labor market.
"Technology has created jobs but it has also led to employee redundancy especially in the banking sector where proliferation of mobile platforms has led to job cuts," the chairperson said.
The employment regulator is also collecting labor demand statistics from employers in order to find out the sectors with undersupply and oversupply of labor.