The high unemployment levels among youths can only be resolved by adopting integrated approaches that consider both sides of the labour market such as the involved all sectors of society, including the youth in the decision making process, Zambia Federation of Employers Executive Director Harrington Chibanda has said.
Mr. Chibanda said the unemployment rates for the young in Africa were significantly high and that those in employments, work in conditions worse than those of their elders.
“It is a crisis which has its own dimension and constraints in countries worldwide regardless of their stages of social economic development, this leads to high economic and social costs for the societies they live in,” he said.
Mr. Chibanda said this at the official opening of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) Africa Sub-Region Workshop in Livingstone yesterday.
He said job creation among the youths should take into consideration the diversity of a country to develop a set of policy responses that were multi-pronged, coherent and context specific.
“Unemployment is a crisis that calls for action from Governments, employers and workers organisations to work harder than before to promote, create and maintain decent and productive jobs,” Mr Chibanda said.
He urged Governments to work with their social partners to develop well balanced policy mix to encourage more employers to invest and generate new job opportunities for young people.
“We call for sector policies which we believe can promote job creation in the medium to long term, well designed and targeted sectors with high potential for employment growth,” he said.
Mr Chibanda observed that a large portion of the youth living in extreme poverty were in rural areas of developing countries.
He said such young people were to a large extent engaged in agricultural activities and needed to be encouraged.
“Special attention should be given to the agricultural sector by moving the rural youth from substance agriculture and introducing them to commercialisation and productivity improvement through technological changes and infrastructure support,” Mr Chibanda said.