Job-rich future

Job-rich future

Ever since the financial crisis first broke, it has become fashionable to see the world economy as a two-speed affair; Western economies seemed to have sunk into a state of permanent decline, but emerging markets were surging ahead. 

In an apparent repeat of what happened in the eurozone, capital is fleeing any emerging market economy with a twin deficit problem – that poisonous combination of current account and fiscal weakness. 

It is perhaps just as well that the UK’s fiscal position is still heading in the right direction, for it scarcely needs saying that Britain is just as dependent on hot flows of foreign capital to fund its burgeoning current account deficit as many of the afflicted emerging markets. 

Investment first: despite optimism about growth, business investment remains firmly stuck in the doldrums. This is not just a British phenomenon. It is global. Companies prefer to cut costs and accumulate cash rather than investing in the future. 

This may be temporary, but for the moment it remains very much the prevailing mindset, and it tells a particularly disturbing story about the future. It says that the corporate world as a whole does not expect much in the way of demand growth any time soon. Regrettably, this does not appear to be merely a cyclical phenomenon that will in time heal itself. The nature of work is changing dramatically, undermining many of the old post-war assumptions about the inevitability of economic advancement. 

More western jobs have already been lost to the tech revolution than were lost in the entire offshoring phenomenon, and the pace is still accelerating. The march of the machines is also widening the income and wealth gap, hollowing out traditional middle-class sources of employment and income. 

Demand in such a bipolar economy, split between a relatively small number of high-earning skilled workers, and the great mass of menial unskilled, may become permanently impaired. 

To get demand growth, you need income growth. In the short to medium term, the productivity gain that the new technologies allow may get in the way of such growth. This is, of course, very much a temporary problem of dislocation. 

Eventually, the new technologies will find new applications that will create myriad new jobs in hitherto undreamt-of industries, but there may be a long and difficult period of transition. 

Ironically, the demand implications of today’s technological revolution may be a major reason why companies are not investing in the same employment-rich way as they did in the past. 

These technologies are also contributing to the widening wealth divide, creating vast fortunes on the one hand, but depressing incomes and employment lower down the scale on the other

We’ve been through such periods of rapid change before, and eventually found ways of sharing the spoils of innovation. But we have perhaps never before seen such an obvious mismatch between the relatively small number of jobs being created in the disruptive technologies and the numbers lost in those industries being disrupted. 




Special health camp for differently-abled children

Special health camp for differently-abled children

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Bahrain celebrates World Cup replica

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Respite for assaulter as victim withdraws complaint

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Bahraini women’s growing social role stressed

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Snapchat map helps cops arrest vice gang

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Three drug addicts sentenced by court

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Stranded family of five in plea to legalise status

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Special health camp for differently-abled children

Special health camp for differently-abled children

BHR4All in collaboration with Spartan Fitness Centre in Saar hosted the first ‘Health and Wellness for All’ camp for a group of differently-abled children. The event, which commenced yesterday, was organised by ConsultNivs, wherein Spartan Fitness organised a qualified instructor to t

Bahrain celebrates World Cup replica

Bahrain celebrates World Cup replica

Manama : Bahrain celebrated its own version of World cup 2018 replica when Talent-ed France team lead by Bahrain National futsal player Salman beat Brazil in a thrilling final at Al Ahli club yesterday. Ciro, an event Management firm, replicated the Russian world cup concept

Respite for assaulter as victim withdraws complaint

Respite for assaulter as victim withdraws complaint

A 31-year-old Indian labourer withdrew his complaint to save his employer’s son one from one year jail sentence.  According to court details, the labourer was attacked by the man aged 24 following an argument between them. “I was in Manama when he confronted me. He shoute

Bahraini women’s growing social role stressed

Bahraini women’s growing social role stressed

French Ambassador to Bahrain Cécile Longé has highlighted the important role of Bahraini women in society. “We all know the importance attached by HM King Hamad and HRH Princess Sabeeka, as the President of the Supreme Council for Women, to women empowerment,” sh

Snapchat map helps cops arrest vice gang

Snapchat map helps cops arrest vice gang

A prostitution racket which was operating from a public swimming pool facility was busted after police officers conducted a raid.   Police began investigations after a video showing semi-naked women dancing near a pool went viral on the messaging app, Snapchat. The video also sh

 Three drug addicts sentenced by court

Three drug addicts sentenced by court

The High Criminal Court jailed three Bahrainis aged 40, 42 and 37 respectively after they were found guilty of consuming drugs.     The 40-year-old defendant was initially charged with selling drugs, but the High Criminal Court dropped this charge after he helped polic

Stranded family of five in plea to legalise status

Stranded family of five in plea to legalise status

Members of a stateless family, who have been living in terrible conditions here for over three decades, are seeking help to legalise their status. Three sisters, one brother and their sick mother have been living in Bahrain without any legal documents since the late 1980s, as their late father an