Bosnia and Herzegovina

Support to Local Employment Partnerships in Bosnia and Herzegovina Project

As one component of the EU Programme for Local Development and Employment, this ILO implemented project seeks to foster sustainable and partnership-driven active labour market frameworks at the local level in Bosnia and Herzegovina for an increased access to formal employment, particularly in flood-affected areas.

Labour market of Bosnia and Herzegovina is characterized by high youth unemployment rate (62 per cent for age group 15–24,) and by low levels of labour force participation (44 per cent, with women having an activity rate of 33 per cent). The continuous growth of the informal economy, which is now equivalent to 30 per cent of the GDP , signals another anomaly of the labour market in Bosnia and Herzegovina that further hinders employment and human resource development.

At the regional level, due to the 2014 floods, a large number of private companies were forced to interrupt their activities. This put many jobs at-risk in the affected areas.

The European Union and other donors have invested significant funds in Bosnia and Herzegovina in building the capacities of local stakeholders so that they can effectively address a wide range of local labour market needs. Now these capacities need to be put to use in an intervention that adopts a local economic development approach through supporting Local Employment Partnerships (LEPs).


The overall objective of the project is to contribute to the strategic development of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s labour market. The specific objective is to foster sustainable, partnership-driven active labour market frameworks at the local level for an increased access to formal employment, particularly in flood-affected areas.

Target interventions will
  • Increase technical capacity and innovation capacity of municipalities and local key stakeholders.
  • Introduce and adapt specific tools and mechanisms to local realities for more and better employment opportunities.
  • Stimulate learning by doing and evolving into more sustainable and broader initiatives.
  • Create a light-house effect.
Main specifics of the project:
  • Local: it will induce local knowledge and potential, rely on home-grown ideas and methods, create room to innovate and local synergies.
  • Employment: it will create highly employable and employed labour force and promote sustainable employment opportunities at local level for all, including women, young, and vulnerable groups.
  • Partnerships: it will stimulate creativity and collective solutions, encourage participation of municipalities, local public employment services, local skills providers, employers’ organizations, workers’ organizations, agencies for development, all aiming at taking responsibility for success.
Particular attention will be given to providing support and help to recover flood-affected areas through supporting the creation of new jobs, helping to recover lost jobs, or in maintaining jeopardised jobs.

Final beneficiaries will be the unemployed living in the areas where LEP’s are established. Specific efforts will be made to ensure that both women and men equally participate and benefit from the project’s activities and results.

The Local Employment Partnerships project will be implemented by the ILO as part of the EU Programme for Local Development and Employment. Other implementing agencies will include UNDP and GIZ. EU Programme presentation is available on

The EU Programme for Local Development and Employment is the second part of the package of 85 million euro pledged by the EU at the Donors Conference in July 2014. It follows the assistance already provided by the EU through its Flood Recovery Programme in the amount of 42.24 million euro, which was implemented by the UNDP, UNICEF and IOM.

For more information please visit the project website: