Matić: The ICT sector has the greatest employment potential

State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign and Internal Trade and Telecommunications Tatjana Matić said that the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector has the greatest employment potential and that it is therefore necessary to motivate girls to assert themselves in this area.

Speaking at the meeting organized by the Ministry of Foreign and Internal Trade and Telecommunications in the MP’s Club “Klub Poslanika” in Belgrade on the occasion of the International Girls in ICT Day, Matić said that women make up only 30 percent of the seven million employees in the ICT sector in Europe; and the situation is no better when it comes to Serbia.

Pointing to the huge employment potential of the sector, she stated that it is estimated that by the year 2020, about 700,000 new jobs will be open in this area in the EU Member States, and that a great deficit of experts is expected.

“It is very important for the entire population to turn to ICT, and to encourage girls in particular to do so, because they are underrated and are not affirmed enough in that area,” said Matić at the meeting which was attended by 150 graduate female students from Belgrade high schools, which were addressed by successful women in the sector of ICT, education, activism and entrepreneurship.

Matić also said that the state has an obligation and responsibility to motivate young people and to guide them through the education system, to fight against all forms of prejudice in relation to these areas of interest, and to contribute to equal participation of girls in these areas.

The secretary of the Association for Information Technologies of the Serbian Chamber of Commerce, Jelena Jovanović, said that, currently, 85 percent of employees in the Serbian ICT industry are men and only 15 percent are women, but that does not mean that things will not change, as the number of women successfully running ICT companies in Serbia is increasing.

She said that there is great demand for IT experts in Serbia and that Germany is currently in need of 32,000 experts.

If they take the ICT path, girls will have an opportunity to work on high-end projects, with top experts, to travel the world, meet interesting people and show that they really love their job, added Jovanović.

The director of the “Tele Group” company Diana Gligorijević pointed to the fact that ICT, in addition to offering challenges in terms of technology, also provides a great opportunity for professional development, as well as the possibility of a complete change in business activities without changing profession.

The initiative marking the day which is dedicated to motivating young women to opt for a career in the field of information and communication technologies, engineering and science came from the Republic of Serbia, and the proposal was accepted by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in 2010. Today, this event is being marked throughout Europe and the world for the fourth time in a row. Various events are organized around the world with the aim of bringing ICT closer to young women and presenting them with the employment opportunities in this field, as well as to encourage girls to think about their future in the ICT sector and other areas where the use of information technology will be key to the development of their careers.