Commenting on plans announced today by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg to spend £1bn on creating work and training placements for 18-24 year-olds, Mark Littlewood, Director General at the Institute of Economic Affairs, said:
“The government is right to look on youth unemployment figures with dismay, but today’s announcement will not solve the problem.
“Rather than spending ever more money that we don’t have – and in the process passing on further debt to the next generation – the government should be far more radical and should look to supply-side reforms to solve the problem.
“Suspending the minimum wage for under 21s – or at the very least regionalising it – and scrapping a whole swathe of burdensome employment legislation would make taking on young people much more attractive to businesses.
“The government has identified the problem but has picked the wrong solution. Only by making it easier for young people to enter the workforce and to get their foot on the jobs ladder will this scandal of youth unemployment begin to be solved.”
To arrange an interview with Mark Littlewood, IEA Director General, please contact Nick Hayns, Communications Officer, 020