More than 10,000 Afghans get help with finding jobs, training through ILO-backed project

An ILO project helps thousands of Afghans finding paid work, receiving training and help in searching for work in the first half of 2006.

Press release | 15 September 2006

More than a thousand people in Afghanistan found paid work and thousands more received training or were helped in their search for work in the first half of 2006, through a project supported by the International Labour Organization (ILO).

Figures complied by the Employment Service Centre (ESC) for January to June 2006 are “encouraging” and show the project has exceeded its quantitive objectives.  In that six month period 10,569 job seekers were interviewed, an increase of 25 per cent on the same period in 2005.  3,788 job vacancies and 1,016 offers of training were registered, almost double the 2005 equivalent.

As a result the success rate (the ratio between overall referrals and confirmed placements into private sector jobs) stands at around 23 per cent.

When reviewed quarterly the figures are also encouraging. In the first three months of 2006 more than 5,400 job seekers were interviewed, 20 per cent more than in the last quarter of 2005.  In the same period the number of vacancies notified to the ESC increased by 40 percent.

Second quarter results were as good or better than those in the first quarter of 2006.  Between April and June almost 5,200 job seekers were interviewed (40 per cent more than in the same period in 2005).  More than 2,100 vacancies were registered, a 25 per cent increase on the first quarter of 2006 and almost 50 per cent more than the same period in 2005. 

About 12 per cent of the job seekers interviewed are women, a figure that remains constant.

The majority of job vacancies still come from NGO’s but the work of the ESC’s outreach teams, who focus on private sector employers, has meant the number of private sector vacancies is increasing. Between January and March private sector vacancies accounted for 30 per cent of job openings (up from 20 per cent in the last quarter of 2005) and between April and June almost 40 per cent – although this spike is largely due to recruitment by a private Jalalabad construction company.

Gregor Schulz, Chief Technical Officer of the Kabul ESC project, said “We are very pleased at the success of the project, despite the difficult operating conditions.  Our research shows that 90 per cent of those who find jobs through the ESC are still in them six months later, and their average income is more than US$200 a month. This financial security plays a vital role in improving the lives of both the employees and their families”.

“In future the project will start providing information in secondary schools to help students prepare themselves for work, and advise them on finding jobs. We will also continue to reach out to the private sector and carry on with our advocacy work on cultural issues,” he said.

The project now has 11 offices; two in Kabul and nine in other provinces – Herat, Mazar, Kunduz, Jalalabad, Pul-I-Khumri, Jowjzan, Gardez, Kandahar and (opened in 2006) Ghazni. It employs 130 people, including 127 local staff.

The ESC project is funded by Germany ’s Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and this phase of the work will continue until January 2007. The ESC located at the Ministry of Refuges and Repatriation in    

For more information please contact:

Gregor Schulz
Employment Services Project,
Mob: +93-(0)70-232489

Krisdaporn Singhaseni
Information Officer – ILO
Tel: +66 (0) 2288 1664