On September 19, 2019, in Skopje, the USAID Partnership for Better Business Regulation Project held a Forum to Stimulate Workforce Growth in the ICT Industry. The purpose of the event was to present and discuss the current ICT-related business climate challenges and to identify potential measures in the area of social contributions, taxes, labor and education that will stimulate ICT workforce growth.
“MASIT actively follows all the problems and challenges that ICT companies face in their daily operations. This event is organized in response to the needs of companies to further improve the business environment for the ICT sector and stimulate the growth of the ICT workforce. We hope that this event will highlight the most important challenges facing ICT companies and will contribute to the creation of concrete proposed measures to improve the business climate for ICT companies by supporting the growth of the ICT workforce, “said Ms. Biljana Prlickova. operating director of MASIT.
The project has taken an active role in supporting the ICT sector by advocating a number of important proposals:
Stimulating “investment” in the workforce:
– tax recognition of expenses incurred in improving working conditions (sports and recreation, team-building, vacations, health examinations, child care, etc.)
– additional tax exemptions for education expenses
– tax incentives for education donations (following the example of sports donations) to stimulate investment in retraining and retraining of the workforce
Limit on Maximum Contribution Base:
– 90,000 gross 50% higher than average paid in ICT industry in 2018
ICT industry defined “custom” working relationships:
– work outside the employer’s premises
– flexibility to measure / pay per performance
– Employer / employee electronic communication
The forum enabled a number of private sector representatives to comment, explain their challenges, and contribute to better solutions that will be advocated through public-private dialogue. Namely, the opportunities for investment in ICT education that will meet the needs of the private sector for quality workforce, increase in the number of students in technical faculties, investments in educational staff and support of non-formal education capacities that contribute to the creation of ICT education were discussed. ICT professionals.
That is why a systematic approach is needed, the Forum participants concluded, by changing more laws in the area of labor and taxation in order to enable continued growth of the ICT sector as one of the most important in the domestic economy contributing to job creation, high income and export of services and products.
In the coming period, the Project will work on defining and resolving the proposals arising from this event. At the same time, the Project will work on constructive solutions proposed as a result of the public-private dialogue mechanisms supported by the Partnership for Better Business Regulation Project. All project activities are implemented by EPI CENTAR International and the four key partners: the Economic Chamber of Macedonia; Chamber of Commerce for Information and Communication Technologies – MASIT; The Economic Chamber of Northwest Macedonia and the Macedonian Chambers of Commerce. By actively participating in the implementation of this project, the chambers will build their capacity to better serve SMEs.