Addis Ababa October 30/2019 The Job Creation Commission and Mastercard Foundation launched a 300 million USD initiative aimed at creating job opportunity for over 10 million youth in the coming 10 years.
The initiative named as ‘Young Africa Works’, will focus on strengthening agri-food system, supporting linkages to agro-industrial parks and increasing access to finance and business development services for agribusiness in Ethiopia.
In their joint press conference, the Commission and Foundation said the project is aligned with Ethiopia’s plan to create new jobs to spur economic growth.
Job Creation Commissioner, Dr. Epherem Tekle said that creating dignified and fulfilling employment requires cooperation of all stakeholders and Mastercard foundation is playing its share.
“Ethiopia’s prosperity will be achieved when we individually achieve our full potential first. Creating jobs for all particularly the youth, and women, are about giving people hope, dignity and the means to build this prosperous future,” he said.
Funded by the Mastercard Foundation, ‘Young Africa Works’ will create programs to catalyze growth in tourism, agriculture, manufacturing and ICT sectors, he said.
The program will support entrepreneurs and small and medium-sized businesses to achieve greater productivity and expand income generating opportunities, he said.
According to him, these areas are identified as potential fields based on studies.
President and CEO of Mastercard Foundation, Reeta Roy said the initiative will support youth in enhancing access to finance, businesses to business development support and skills development so they can further scale their business to create more jobs.
“Through my travel across Ethiopia, I am inspired by creativity and dynamism of young entrepreneurs and how their innovations are bringing about meaningful change in their communities”, she said.
She said that Ethiopia remains a priority of the foundation because of government’s commitment to reform regulatory environment to encourage development of the private sector and attract more foreign investment.
The Mastercard Foundation is the third largest foundation globally with financial assets worth about 30 billion USD. It focused on Africa and committed more than 2.3 billion USD to advance education and financial inclusion across the continent.
Among 34 countries that the foundation is currently engaged across the globe, 10 are located in Africa.