Media Advisory

Strengthening Youth Entrepreneurship in the Pacific

The International Labour Organization (ILO) in partnership with ILO Pacific Community (SPC), Pacific Youth Council (PYC) and the Pacific Leadership Programme (PLP) are convening a 3 day regional summit on young entrepreneurship. The summit will be held from the 5th to the 7th April in Suva, Fiji.

Press release | Pasifika Conference Room, SPC, Nabua, Suva, Fiji | 05 April 2017
Suva (ILO News) – The International Labour Organization (ILO) in partnership with ILO Pacific Community (SPC), Pacific Youth Council (PYC) and the Pacific Leadership Programme (PLP) are convening a 3 day regional summit on young entrepreneurship. The summit will be held from the 5th to the 7th April in Suva, Fiji.

Participating Pacific Island Countries will include Fiji, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga, Kiribati and Tuvalu. The focus of the summit is to identifying specific national and regional policy responses to promote youth entrepreneurship, share national policy analysis identifying best practice and gaps and establish a regional young entrepreneurs council.

The ILO has provided extensive support in the Pacific toward enhancing young people understanding of Entrepreneurship, with the roll out of its ‘Start Your Business” (SYB) and “Know About Business” (KAB) modules in many countries of the region, to develop awareness in schools and vocational training centres. The ILO also supports young entrepreneurs to be part of the national private sector organization, utilising its national platform to come together to network, to share ideas and best practices, more importantly to be able to influence policy development affecting youth and young entrepreneurs to be more conducive for them to grow. The ILO’s most recent support to Pacific Island countries has been the establishment of Young Entrepreneurs Councils (YEC) within the Employers’ or National Private Sector Organisations.

To address the Youth Employment Crisis, the International Labour Conference and its 185 member countries agreed on a resolution, a ‘call for Action” in 2012. This Call for Action specifically addresses the way forward and out of the crisis with the following recommendations:

1. Designing Employment and economic policies that place jobs first
2. Enhancing Education, Training & Skills and facilitating the school-to-work transition
3. Promoting Labour Market Policies
4. Encouraging Entrepreneurship and self-employment
5. Enhancing the rights for young people
6. Confirming ILO action – with advocacy, technical cooperation and knowledge

In Asia and the Pacific today young women and men between the ages 15 and 24 years accounts for 18% of region’s population but 44% of the unemployed, 3.5 times more likely than adults to be unemployed. Their potential is not being fully realized because they lack access to productive and decent work. Youth unemployment rate is 23% in the Pacific, some countries even more than 50%.

For further information and to arrange an interview, please contact Edward Bernard by email: bernard@ilo.org  tel: (679) 9447632

Summit Venue: Pasifika Conference Room, SPC, Nabua, Suva, Fiji Islands