NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 13 – More than 400 representatives of youth, businessmen, education practitioners and policy makers from 44 countries across the African continent have called for the improvement of job prospects for the African Youth through employment-oriented education and skills development.
The call was made at the Africa Talks Jobs conference held at the African Union Commission headquarters in Addis Ababa.
The recommendations call for a stronger engagement of the African business community in providing opportunities for skills training and joint offers with education institutions.
120 African companies and business associations, under the auspices of Business Africa, have also committed to investing in skills development and partnership with education institutions for job skills education and training.
Governments have been urged to provide the necessary frameworks as well as favourable conditions for young entrepreneurs.
At the same time, education at all levels and youth activities need to better address labour market demands and equip the youth with skills to start their own businesses.
In 2016, the International Labor Organization revealed that Africa, which has the world youngest population, had 71 million unemployed persons. Similarly, working poverty rates among youths in Sub-Saharan Africa was 70 per cent, translating to 64.4 per cent million youths living in extreme or moderate poverty.
A World Bank report indicates that unemployment in Kenya rose to 17.4 per cent in 2016 among its 25.5 million working age population.