© Sacha Jennis
A consortium consisting of the German GIZ, UNDP and the ILO has been implementing a private sector development project “EU4Business” in Bosnia and Herzegovina funded by the European Union. The four-year project started in 2018. The ILO contribution focused on assistance to start-ups and a means to job creation.
The EU now gave an additional contract to the same consortium as part of the EU COVID-19 assistance to BiH. The ILO will assist the textile, apparel, and footwear sector on business continuity with a goal of retaining 1000 jobs and creating at least 100 new jobs. ILO will also work on implementing occupational safety and health (OSH) measures as a condition for business continuity. Product and business innovation will improve the access of companies to new export markets. Start-ups will receive support to ensure the employment of unemployed persons, women, youth and other vulnerable groups. In addition, the ILO will set up a help desk to provide financial and legal advice to SMEs and entrepreneurs during the crisis generated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The budget of the ILO component is 3.25 Mio EUR."Start-ups will receive support to ensure the employment of unemployed persons, women, youth and other vulnerable groups."
The European Union also decided to continue supporting Local Employment Partnerships (LEPs) in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Employment challenges can be very specific to regions and localities. LEPs are partnerships of local governments, employment agencies, schools and training centers, NGOs and employers with the common goal of training or retraining unemployed and hard-to-employ people to master new skills that enable them to find jobs on the local labour market. The Local Employment Partnership phase I. funded by EU and implemented by ILO facilitated the establishment of 19 local employment partnerships in BiH, which trained more than 1,600 unemployed persons, a third of them employed immediately after the end of their training. Phase II. will support the establishment of an additional 20 LEPs with action plans to deliver training and labour market integration programmes. The budget of the 3-year project is 4 Mio EUR."Phase II. will support the establishment of an additional 20 Local Employment Partnerships."