Unemployment is a significant challenge for youth in sub-Saharan Africa. Among youth between the ages of 20 to 24, only 65% participate in the labor force. Among those employed, few earn a reasonable living or work in a job suited to their skills level. Africa reports the highest youth working poverty rates globally, almost 70% in 2016.
Low education or schooling rates are a significant contributor to this situation:
- 45% of youth aged 15 to 19 are out of school and working in the informal sector.
- Nearly 2 in 3 young workers do not have the level of education expected to work productively on the job.
There are currently an estimated 95 million unskilled youth in Africa who are out of school and either unemployed or underemployed. Approximately 10 – 12 million young people enter into this weak African labor market every year.
There exists an urgent need to address and reverse this trend in order to secure the continent’s socio-economic future .