Minister of International Cooperation Sahar Nasr and foreign minister of Norway Børge Brende signed on Sunday an agreement worth $1.2m regarding the implementation of the “Job opportunities for youth of Egypt” project in Qaliubiya and Menoufiya governorates.
The agreement was signed in the presence of the Norwegian ambassador to Cairo, Sten Arne, and director of the International Labor Organisation (ILO) Cairo office Peter Van Rooij, as well as a number of the European Parliament members who are visiting Egypt.
Nasr said that the project aims to create decent jobs for young people through offering a group of training programmes to increase productivity and enhance innovation, as well as support small and micro-enterprises owned by young people.
The minister pointed out that there is a strong commitment from the government to provide job opportunities for young people through the development of small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). She added that the ministry is cooperating with its partners to develop young people’s skills and provide them with the required tools to improve their living standards and contribute to the development of the community and economy.
The ministry is working to provide financing for SMEs, which represent more than 98% of the companies in Egypt and provide more than 85% of jobs.
Brende said that the young generation faces significant challenges, as about one third of youth are unemployed, so there is an urgent need to find structural solutions to these challenges on the short-term.
He added that they will work in cooperation with the ILO to increase job opportunities for young people in Qaliubiya and Menoufiya governorates, which suffer from big challenges in terms of employment.
Brende continued that the project depends on the existing cooperation between the Egyptian government and the ILO. It focuses on business management training, productivity, working conditions, and training for employment. The project will also facilitate communication with financial service providers.