Despite improving its regional and global standing in recent years, Morocco has not sufficiently dealt with youth unemployment.
Rabat – Over the next four years, Belgium will allocate €3 million to encourage youth self-employment under a new Belgian-Moroccan project.
The “Supporting Youth Entrepreneurship Development in Morocco” project aims to promote youth entrepreneurship and job stability, especially in rural areas. The project has been in the works since 2016 and is in line with both countries’ broader goals of international economic integration and cooperation.
Unemployment has been a long-standing issue in Morocco and is particularly high among youth ages 15-24. The country’s youth unemployment rate is currently 24.1 percent, according to Trading Economics’ 2019 first quarter report.
The project follows Morocco’s National Integrated Youth Strategy and coincides with the 2017 National Plan for the Promotion of Employment (PNPE), which both aim to equip young people with the skills and knowledge to succeed in a professional environment.
Belgium’s ambassador to Morocco and Moroccan Minister of Employment Mohamed Yatim signed the agreement Wednesday. Implementation will first focus on the Beni Mellal-Khenifra, the eastern region, Fez-Meknes, and Draa-Tafilalet.
The project comes alongside a recently approved $55 million loan from the World Bank to develop youth employability in Morocco.