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How can Africa grow and stabilise its job market?
22. January 2017 12:47
Increasing employment opportunities
Sub-Saharan Africa faces a rise in the share of its working-age population (WAP). Population data indicates that the WAP in the sub-Saharan African region will increase by 70 percent from 466 million in 2013 to 793 million in 2030 (Lam and Leibbrandt, 2013).
Farming is the dominant occupation of most young Africans. The agriculture that will allow young farmers to prosper will have to draw on quality modern agricultural science – at present it does not.
Lack of access to finance for youth and particularly women entrepreneurs further limits growth and expansion opportunities.
A broader vision of high-quality education (one that fosters the full breadth of skills needed in a changing world) should be a priority in 2017.
Broadening access to education will ensure a steady supply of skilled workers into the labour market to support the transition to higher value added sectors.
it is important to diversify economic activity away from the current high concentration in traditional low value added agriculture, as it is in many African economies, to more productive activities such as agri-processing, manufacturing, and high-value added services.
For those young self-employed workers in the informal sector, there should be institutional mechanisms that ensure adequate access to credit, in light of the fact that these individuals are likely to be wealth and asset constrained.
Event to watch: African Union Assembly Meeting – January 24-31, 2017
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