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NEWS INDEPTH: Changes to expect in future jobs

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The labour market is set for drastic changes as technological advances and growing interest in Artificial Intelligence (AI) accelerate, creating new jobs while killing others, according to a new report.

For instance, it is projected that work done by machines and algorithms will rise from 29 per cent currently to over 50 per cent by 2022 following increased penetration of AI, according to the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) The Future of Jobs Report 2018.

These changes will be driven by four factors including; high-speed mobile Internet, AI, adoption of big data analytics and cloud computing.

These WEF says that these trends are being accompanied by a set of socio-economic shifts such as economic growth, expansion of education and middle class and growing interest in green technology.

The changes are projected to come in the following formats.

Constant retraining for workers

On average, employees will need 101 days of retraining and upskilling in the period up to 2022. Emerging skills gaps — both among individual workers and companies’ senior leadership — may significantly obstruct organisation’s transformation management.

Depending on industry and geography, between one-half and two-thirds of companies are likely to turn to external contractors, temporary staff and freelancers to address their skills gaps.

A comprehensive approach to workforce planning, reskilling and upskilling will be the key for positive, proactive management of such trends.

Division of labour between humans, machines and algorithms

Employers interviewed by the WEF expect a major shift in the division of labour between humans, machines and algorithms for the tasks currently performed by employees. Currently an average of 71 per cent of total task hours across the industries covered by the Future of Jobs Report 2018 are performed by humans, compared to 29 per cent by machines or algorithms.

By 2022 this average is expected to have shifted to 58 per cent task hours performed by humans, and 42 per cent by machines or algorithms.

In terms of total working hours, no work task is yet performed predominantly by machines or algorithms today. By 2022, 62 per cent of organisation’s data processing and information search and transmission tasks will be performed by machines.

Industries will experience different effects of tech changes on jobs

High-speed mobile Internet, AI, big data analytics, and cloud technology are set to spearhead companies’ adoption of new technologies between 2018 and 2022.

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The WEF says many organisations will also look to machine learning and augmented and virtual reality for considerable business investment.

By contrast, investment in the kind of robotic technologies imagined in movies and popular fiction will remain somewhat more niche over the period — but is nevertheless picking up pace. Stationary robots are likely to be the most widely adopted by 2022 — but different industries have distinct use cases and preferences.

Net positive outlook for jobs amid significant job disruption

The WEF projects that by 2022, today’s newly emerging occupations would have grown from 16 to 27 per cent of the employee base of large firms globally, while job roles currently affected by technological obsolescence are set to drop from 31 to 21 per cent. In purely quantitative terms, 75 million current job roles may be displaced by the shift in the division of labour between humans, machines and algorithms, while 133 million new job roles may emerge at the same time.

Growing occupations include roles such as data analysts, software and applications developers and e-commerce and social media specialists — jobs that are significantly based on, and enhanced by, the use of technology. However, also expected to grow are job roles based on distinctively ‘human’ traits, such as customer service workers, sales and marketing professionals, training and development, people and culture, and organisational development specialists as well as innovation managers.

New tasks will drive demand for new skills

It is projected that by 2022 the skills required to perform most jobs will have shifted significantly. Global average “skills stability”— the proportion of core skills required to perform a job that will remain the same — is expected to be about 58 per cent. That means workers will see an average shift of 42 per cent in required workplace skills in the period leading up to 2022.

Skills growing in prominence include analytical thinking and active learning as well as skills such as technology design, highlighting the growing demand for various forms of technology competency.

However, proficiency in new technologies is only one part of the 2022 skills equation. “Human” skills such as creativity, originality and initiative, critical thinking, persuasion and negotiation will likewise retain or increase their value, as will attention to detail, resilience, flexibility and complex problem-solving. Emotional intelligence, leadership and social influence as well as service orientation are also set to see particular increase in demand relative to their current prominence today.

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World Bank pushes G-20 to extend debt relief to 2021

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World Bank Group President David Malpass has urged the Group of 20 rich countries to extend the time frame of the Debt Service Suspension Initiative(DSSI) through the end of 2021, calling it one of the key factors in strengthening global recovery.

“I urge you to extend the time frame of the DSSI through the end of 2021 and commit to giving the initiative as broad a scope as possible,” said Malpass.

He made these remarks at last week’s virtual G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors Meeting.

The World Bank Chief said the COVID-19 pandemic has triggered the deepest global recession in decades and what may turn out to be one of the most unequal in terms of impact.

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People in developing countries are particularly hard hit by capital outflows, declines in remittances, the collapse of informal labor markets, and social safety nets that are much less robust than in the advanced economies.

For the poorest countries, poverty is rising rapidly, median incomes are falling and growth is deeply negative.

Debt burdens, already unsustainable for many countries, are rising to crisis levels.

“The situation in developing countries is increasingly desperate. Time is short. We need to take action quickly on debt suspension, debt reduction, debt resolution mechanisms and debt transparency,” said Malpass.

ALSO READ:Global Economy Plunges into Worst Recession – World Bank

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Kenya’s Central Bank Drafts New Laws to Regulate Non-Bank Digital Loans

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The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) will regulate interest rates charged on mobile loans by digital lending platforms if amendments on the Central bank of Kenya Act pass to law. The amendments will require digital lenders to seek approval from CBK before launching new products or changing interest rates on loans among other charges, just like commercial banks.

“The principal objective of this bill is to amend the Central bank of Kenya Act to regulate the conduct of providers of digital financial products and services,” reads a notice on the bill. “CBK will have an obligation of ensuring that there is fair and non-discriminatory marketplace access to credit.”

According to Business Daily, the legislation will also enable the Central Bank to monitor non-performing loans, capping the limit at not twice the amount of the defaulted loan while protecting consumers from predatory lending by digital loan platforms.

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Tighter Reins on Platforms for Mobile Loans

The legislation will boost efforts to protect customers, building upon a previous gazette notice that blocked lenders from blacklisting non-performing loans below Ksh 1000. The CBK also withdrew submissions of unregulated mobile loan platforms into Credit Reference Bureau. The withdrawal came after complaints of misuse over data in the Credit Information Sharing (CIS) System available for lenders.

Last year, Kenya had over 49 platforms providing mobile loans, taking advantage of regulation gaps to charge obscene rates as high as 150% a year. While most platforms allow borrowers to prepay within a month, creditors still pay the full amount plus interest.

Amendments in the CBK Act will help shield consumers from high-interest rates as well as offer transparency on terms of digital loans.

SEE ALSO: Central Bank Unveils Measures to Tame Unregulated Digital Lenders

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Scope Markets Kenya customers to have instant access to global financial markets

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NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 20 – Clients trading through the Scope Markets Kenya trading platform will get instant access to global financial markets and wider investment options. 

This follows the launch of a new Scope Markets app, available on both the Google PlayStore and IOS Apple Store.

The Scope Markets app offers clients over 500 investment opportunities across global financial markets.

The Scope Markets app has a brand new user interface that is very user friendly, following feedback from customers.

The application offers real-time quotes; newsfeeds; research facilities, and a chat feature which enables a customer to make direct contact with the Customer Service Team during trading days (Monday to Friday).

The platform also offers an enhanced client interface including catering for those who trade at night.

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The client will get instant access to several asset classes in the global financial markets including; Single Stocks CFDs (US, UK, EU) such as Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Google, BP, Carrefour;  Indices (Nasdaq, FTSE UK), Metals (Gold, Silver); Currencies (60+ Pairs), Commodities (Oil, Natural Gas).

The launch is part of Scope Markets Kenya strategy of enriching the customer experience while offering clients access to global trading opportunities.

Scope Markets Kenya CEO, Kevin Ng’ang’a observed, “the Sope Markets app is very easy to use especially when executing trades. Customers are at the heart of everything we do. We designed the Scope Markets app with the customer experience in mind as we seek to respond to feedback from our customers.”

He added that enhancing the client experience builds upon the robust trading platform, Meta Trader 5, unveiled in 2019, enabling Scope Markets Kenya to broaden the asset classes available on the trading platform.

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