A joint World Bank and the International Labour Organization (ILO) report “Exports to Jobs: Boosting the Gains from Trade in South Asia” breaks new ground in examining the impact of exports on local labor markets in South Asia. It uses an innovative approach, analyzing the effect on local employment, wages and changes in exports by combining disaggregated data from household-level or worker-level surveys with trade data from India and Sri Lanka.
The report suggests that increasing exports and helping workers get the necessary skills can lead to better jobs and higher wages in Sri Lanka, including more formal jobs for women. Policies need to be put in place to ensure these gains can be more broadly shared among members of society.
The report makes policy recommendations that could contribute to better labor market outcomes, exports diversification and more inclusive labor force by increasing the participation of disadvantaged groups.