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800 Million Youth in Developing Countries Face Uncertain Employment Future Over the Next Decade

About 800million young people in developing countries to be unemployed in the next decade. World Bank President and Mauritania President propose some solutions.

In the next ten years, nearly 800 million young people out of a projected 1.2 billion in developing countries will face joblessness or lack clear employment opportunities, according to an article co-authored by World Bank President Ajay Banga and Mauritania’s President Mohamed Ould Ghazouani.

The article notes that while some of these youths may continue their education, this will only delay and potentially prolong the employment crisis.

The challenge of insufficient job opportunities will be particularly severe in Africa, home to nearly one-third of this generation. However, the authors stress that “forecasts are not destiny,” highlighting that Africa’s future will be a central topic at the upcoming G7 summit in Apulia, Italy.

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Banga and Ghazouani underscore the need for the G7 summit to prioritize Africa’s future. They argue that achieving a world free of poverty and a sustainable planet will be impossible if Africa cannot harness its vast potential to create sufficient employment and economic growth.

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They propose that a successful strategy for Africa should involve input from the World Bank, particularly through its International Development Association (IDA), which provides affordable financing.

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Addressing Africa’s unemployment challenge is immense due to the continent’s significant issues, including 500 million people living in poverty, conflicts, climate change, unsustainable debt, and other crises. Yet, the authors suggest that the World Bank can offer a path to progress.

They advocate for a focused strategy that generates jobs and lays the groundwork for development, anchored in five pillars.

They are improving access to electricity, building efficient, high-quality infrastructure, which they say is crucial for trade, increasing investment in agribusiness, strengthening the healthcare system and lastly promoting tourism which would create jobs for women, who make up the majority of the sector’s workforce and accelerate economic growth.

They conclude by calling on other development partners to work with the World Bank emphasising that the Bank’s IDA is an essential partner and knowledge source in addressing the unemployment challenge.

“With IDA’s support, we can target jobs- and growth-producing sectors, engage the private sector, and help Africa secure the prosperous future it deserves,” the article noted.

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