Approximately 1 billion people live in the world’s second-largest continent. Only Asia has more people but Africa now has the fastest growing population. If current trends continue, the number of Africans will rise to 1.4 billion in 2025 and to 1.9 billion in 2050. A third of the babies born in the world will be African. Already, 61% of Africa’s population is 24 and under, making it the youngest in the world.
Africa needs to provide employment to 200 million people aged between 15-24. As per the World Bank, youth account for 60% of Africa’s unemployed. The African Economic Outlook records extensively how the young fare in labor markets. Lack of demand for labor, absence of meritocracy, and lack of proper training are the top three barriers to getting a job.
Young women find it harder than their male counterparts to find a job. Underemployment is rife, especially in the agricultural sector. Many businesses report that they have to import managerial and technical talent from abroad to run their operations. The simple explanation for this phenomenon is that Africans lack skills because they are victims of terrible education systems. The continent’s military expenditure still exceeds that on education or agriculture.
Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor. Read the whole story at Youth Employment in Africa: Whose Job Is It? – Fair Observer.
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