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> MIGRANT Home > Good practices database - Labour migration policies and programmes > Joint Programme on Youth, Employment and Migration (YEM): Engaging Tunisian youth to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)

Joint Programme on Youth, Employment and Migration (YEM): Engaging Tunisian youth to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)

  • Responsible Organisations: International Organization for Migration (IOM) (International Organisation); United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) (International Organisation); International Labour Organization (ILO) (International Organisation); Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) (International Organisation); United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) (International Organisation)
  • ILO Regions: Africa; Americas; Europe and Central Asia
  • Country(ies): Belgium; Canada; Tunisia
  • Thematic areas: Policy coherence
  • MLFLM: 1.(a),(b); 2.; 4.; 5.; 7.; 12.; 15.
  • Sectors: Health


The Joint Programme on Youth, Employment and Migration (YEM): Engaging Tunisian youth to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), funded by the MDG Achievement Fund and implemented by five agencies (ILO, IOM, UNDP, UNIDO and FAO), was developed with the aim of enhancing local capacities in migration-prone areas of Tunisia, through the sustainable creation of decent jobs and the promotion of local competencies.

1. Regional Action Plans for Youth Employment - As part of the Programme, Regional Action Plans for Youth Employment (PARE by their French acronym) were developed in three Tunisian governorates (El Kef, Gafsa, and Ariana). Each PARE proposes strategic actions to improve the employment situation of young people. They are intended to provide reference material for all actions to be taken for the promotion of employment in these areas. A follow-up project implemented by the ILO has since provided technical support for the implementation of the action plans.

2. Promoting youth entrepreneurship - As part of the Programme, training and support were provided to help both university graduates and unskilled youth start their own small businesses in the regions of Kef and Gafsa. The beneficiaries included 126 ex-prisoners, 20 young women, and 63 unemployed youth.

In July 2012, the Programme contributed to the Souk At-tanmia initiative led by the African Development Bank (, an economic development initiative that encouraged innovative projects through an entrepreneurial competition. Winners received a direct subsidy of 10,000 - 30,000 DNT and technical assistance through all stages of their projects. Of 2,000 applications submitted from across the country, 300 projects were shortlisted, and 71 winners selected.

YEM also assisted in the creation of the Digital Entrepreneurship Platform, a digital platform that promotes peer-to-peer exchange between young entrepreneurs (or potential entrepreneurs) and an improved dialogue between youth and government on topics related to business start-up and employment.

3. Improving mechanisms for migration - A lack of local job opportunities and organised migration schemes has led Tunisian youth to migrate through irregular channels. For this reason, YEM worked to improve mechanisms for migration.

The Programme provided both technical and direct support to a total of 30 young returnee migrants in the creation of their own small or micro businesses. It also supported the development of public-private partnerships, including a tripartite agreement between the Ministry of Vocational Training and Employment (MFPE), the multinational human resource consulting company Adecco, and IOM. The agreement gives the MFPE access to Adecco's recruitment networks in potential destination countries.

In addition, YEM assisted in the establishment of temporary labour migration schemes with Canada and with the elderly care sector in Belgium. Flemish language classes were provided for those migrating to Belgium, while the Tunisian National Employment Agency (ANETI) identified and prepared potential candidates who were then matched to appropriate trade occupations in Canada.


last updated on 15.05.2015^ top