Supporting a National Employment Strategy that works for Young Syrian Refugees in Jordan (SIDA III)

The ILO is working towards developing a national framework on apprenticeship system in Jordan.



Over 67% of Jordanians are under 30 years of age. Consequently, a large number of young people enter the labour force every year. In 2013, youth unemployment at 31.9% was more than double the overall rate. High levels of unemployment and low economic activity rates, especially among the youth and women, have long been a major concern for the government and have figured prominently in various policy documents and strategies over the past two decades. Over the past two decades, job creation has remained concentrated in low productivity sectors and in the expanding informal economy.

Evidence suggests that the Syrian refugee presence is taking a toll on Jordanians with a downward pressure on wages in the informal economy, where wages were already low. In turn, most young Syrian refugees work in the informal economy in jobs below their qualification levels, in difficult working conditions and for a meagre wage, which put them in very vulnerable working conditions and many of them suffer from social exclusion.

The ILO has been conducting an evaluation of the National Employment Strategy (NES) in Jordan with recommendations for the implementation of its mid-term objectives. The ILO is also working towards developing a national framework on apprenticeship system in Jordan.


  • Create more and better job opportunities for the poor and the vulnerable (women and youth); through:
  1. Improving the NES implementation Plan; and
  2. developing a national framework on apprenticeship systems in Jordan.


  • Undertaking a participatory assessment of the NES implementation in the context of the Syrian refugees’ influx;
  • training and coaching of the NES Unit on Monitoring & Evaluation (M&E);
  • designing a draft national framework for apprenticeship based on: 
  1. an assessment of workplace based training practices of the Vocational Training Corporation (VTC), National Employment and Training Company (NET), the Al- Balqa' Applied University (BAU) and UNRWA,
  2. tripartite discussions facilitated by the Economic and Social Council;
  • capacity building of social partners and training providers to implement this framework.


  • Evidence based recommendations for the implementation of the mid-term objectives of the National Employment Strategy;
  • improved capacity of the NES Unit to monitor and evaluate projects against Key Performance Indicators; and
  • a National Apprenticeship System is designed and proposed for decision by the Government.