Pro Agro Youth Project to Create 1,500 Jobs
As one way of addressing underemployment and unemployment among youth in the country, the International Labor Organization (ILO) has launched a Pro Agro Youth project to propel in job creation.
Speaking during the opening of a two-day workshop in Salima, National Project Coordinator for the project Patrick Makondetsa said the project will focus on agricultural capitalization to create 1500 jobs in the process.
According to Makondetsa, the project is aimed at developing sustainable agricultural capacities of rural youth through sustainable and innovative agribusiness hubs.
“We want 70% of the youth to get employed in district agribusinesses and 30% should have access to capital to start their own business,” he said.
On his part, principal secretary in the ministry of Labor Wezzie Kayira acknowledged that there is low employment rate among youth which is resulting in increased crime rate and drug abuse.
Kayira, however, said that the project is timely as it is focused on youth empowerment for them to either get jobs or establish their own businesses.
“Unemployment and underemployment great affect our youth in the country which is resulting in more cases of suicide due to depression,” he further explained.
As part of the project’s advisory committee, the Malawi Congress of Trade Union says it will invest in the project to ensure that the jobs created are decent.
Secretary General for MCTU Madalitso Njolomole is optimistic that the project will surpass its target of creating 1500 jobs.
“We have just completed a youth structure at MCTU which is looking at providing the youth with decent jobs right after school, and our policies are in line with this new project,” he said.
Executive director for Employers Consultative Association of Malawi George Khakhi has expressed commitment to connect the youths to internships and well-paying jobs as soon as they are done with school.
“We need to provide these youth jobs so that they can earn money and gain experience at the same time," Khakhi narrated.
The two-day workshop brought together stakeholders from both public and private sectors with the aim of sharing professional perspectives on how best they can promote decent jobs for the youth in rural areas.