Technical cooperation

A strategic alliance for youth employment

The ILO presents a technical cooperation portfolio that calls for the mobilization of resources and partnerships to tackle the youth employment crisis.

Press release | 22 February 2013

GENEVA - During a meeting of ILO development partners in Geneva on 22 February 2013, the ILO presented a portfolio of proposed technical cooperation projects to build support and partnerships to tackle the youth employment crisis.

The portfolio follows the adoption of the resolution on “The youth employment crisis: A call for action”, adopted by the International Labour Conference in June 2012.

The Conference resolution calls for immediate and targeted action through a context-specific multi-pronged approach that revolves around the following five main policy areas : macro-economic policies for pro-employment growth, education and training for employability, labour market policies to target disadvantaged youth, youth entrepreneurship as a career option, and rights at work to ensure equal treatment of young workers.
Youth employment: alarming figures
  • In 2012, close to 75 million young people worldwide were out of work.
  • Some four million more are unemployed today than in 2007, and more than six million have given up looking for a job.
  • More than 200 million young people are working but earning under US$2 a day.
  • Informal employment among young people remains pervasive.

In addressing the development community, ILO Director-General Guy Ryder said, “I am most frequently asked whether youth unemployment constitutes a threat to our societies. This is the wrong question. Even if it is not such a threat, none of us should be willing to tolerate a situation in which millions are left in a situation of desperation. The time has come to unleash the potential of today’s youth to become tomorrow’s workers, entrepreneurs, citizen and agents of change. It is a multi-dimensional challenge which requires a more integrated and sustainable approach backed by a solid global strategic alliance for youth employment”.

This technical cooperation portfolio comprises 48 new projects in five regions. The ILO calls for the mobilization of resources and partnerships to tackle the youth employment crisis for a total amount of US$ 163,200,000.

The ILO call for an exceptional effort in mobilizing support builds on an existing portfolio of 50 youth employment-related projects that are under implementation across different regions supported by multiple partners.

The new technical cooperation portfolio focuses on technical support and policy advice to governments and the social partners in developing and implementing the multi-pronged approach of the 2012 Call for Action. It also includes knowledge and capacity building proposals for ILO to provide global leadership and act as a centre of excellence on youth employment.

The Director-General has identified jobs and skills for youth as one of the ILO’s critical areas of importance in his proposals to the Governing Body for the 2014-15 Programme and Budget..