The Solutions for Youth Employment (HYPERLINK “https://www.s4ye.org/”S4YE) has together with the World Bank launched an ambitious HYPERLINK “https://www.s4ye.org/solutions-youth-employment-2015-2020-strategy-launch”five-year strategy that will tackle major challenges of youth employment worldwide including Sub-Saharan countries like Botswana.
Botswana is one of the hardest hit by high level of unemployment with the government failing to create an environment that would enable youth to create jobs for themselves or get employment.
The new strategy, which is first of three to be developed during the 15-year initiative, has a bold target to support 150 million youth across the world by 2030.
“While the youth employment challenge has a global scope, S4YE will focus its work its interventions where the youth employment challenge is a national priority, including the Middle East, North Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean, and Asia,” the World Bank stated.
World Bank’s Senior Director for Social Protection and Labor and S4YE Board Member, Arup Banerji said the bank’s twin goals are to eliminate extreme poverty and to boost shared prosperity for the bottom 40 percent of the population by 2030.
“Access to productive employment is the most effective way to share the growth dividend and escape poverty. Investing in employability for youth – especially the most disadvantaged – is an essential part of this process”.
Agriculture has been seen as one sector that can create thousands of both formal and informal jobs for young people in Africa especially where there is abundance of land.
In Botswana, the latest survey results released by Statistics Botswana have shown that young people are beginning to take part in agricultural production.
“Out of a total of 119,134 traditional farmers in 2013, about 10.3 percent were aged between 15 and 39 years as compared to 9.6 percent in 2012,” the survey showed adding that the dominant age group in farming is the 65 years and above at 36.4 percent followed by the 50 to 59 years at 24.9 percent.
Botswana unemployment rate is on the rise with the economy faced with the closure of many companies. “Official” unemployment has been at 20 percent in the past few years, but independent researchers argue that the actual figures may be as high as 40 percent.
It is estimated that approximately1350 jobs have been lost since the beginning of the year with 1000 jobs having been lost in mining and related industries alone.