ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia
Challenged with a bulging youth population and simmering instability, Ethiopia on Thursday unveiled a Plan of Action for Jobs Creation — an ambitious project that envisages providing 20 million new jobs by 2025.
Ephrem Lemango, commissioner of jobs creation organization under the Prime Minister’s office, unveiled the plan that comprises key sectors, believed to absorb the labor market.
“Studies show that up to 14 million jobs need to be created by 2025,” Lemango told a gathering of hundreds including senior government officials, representatives of development partners, the private sector as well as youth and women’s associations.
The plan of action was unveiled at the first National Jobs Summit.
Agriculture, Industry, Tourism and Services have been identified as sectors that contribute most to the country’s jobs creation blue print.
A fact sheet was made available at the event has it that urban employment rate stands at 19.1% in 2018 while national unemployment rate for the year 2013 was registered to be 4.6%.
It said 2 million new job seekers enter the labor market every year in a country where the population of working age of those 10 and above is estimated to reach 94.2 million by 2025.
The Ethiopian government was committed to making the new generation a center of change and leadership in all spheres of the country’s lives, Deputy Prime Minister Demeke Mekonnen said in his opening address.
“We recognize the potential of small and medium enterprises [SMEs] as drivers of growth and job creation,” he said adding his government will increase support to SMEs.
“But there have been elements in the country who are bent on hijacking the reform agenda by mobilizing the youth to destroy our [one] age old cohesion, wealth and stability,” he said.
“We will not allow this to happen,” he said.
Ethiopia has made “job creation” the centerpiece of major economic reform programs since last year, and established the jobs creation commission 11 months ago.
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