Although the Indonesian unemployment rate decreased from 12.5 per cent in 2007 to 8.4 per cent in 2009, the total number of jobless people, 9.39 million in 2008, is still substantial. Moreover, the decline in the rate of unemployment has been followed by an expansion of the number of workers in the informal economy and an increase in the number of unpaid workers.
To strengthen the government of Indonesia effort in reducing the unemployment rate that has been succeeded in the past 5 years that is sustained in the current Mid-Term Development Plan 2009-2014, the ILO provides technical assistance to develop employment policies and implement programmes related to employment creation. The programme covers labour-based infrastructure, vocational and entrepreneurship skills development, microfinance and local economic development focusing on the post-crisis recovery and youth employment activities.
On-going programmes include JOY-Job Opportunities for Youth project, ESD-Entrepreneurship Skills Development in Papua Highlands, EAST-Education and Skills Training Project in Aceh and the Eastern part of Indonesia, PELAGANDONG-ILO/UNIDO Joint Peace Building in Maluku and Livelihood Project and Road Project in Aceh and Nias, Sumatra.