The European Union (EU) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have expressed confidence in the potential of the 20 million euros (about K37 billion) Transformative Agriculture Commercialisation and Entrepreneurship (Tace) Agribiz Hub to create jobs for the youth.
In an interview on Friday in Lilongwe on the sidelines of the launch of the Tace Agribiz Hub at the Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (Luanar), EU head of cooperation Ivor Hoefkens said the programme will help start-ups to flourish and become solid businesses that can create employment.
He said almost 90 percent of jobs in Malawi exist in the informal sector and that formal job openings are limited to between 30 000 and 40 000 people annually.
Said Hoefkens: “With over half of the Malawi population being 18 years or younger, around 500 000 young individuals enter the active labour force annually, facing scarce opportunities for securing decent formal employment.
UNDP deputy resident representative Challa Getachew said with the right support, young people can scale up their businesses and contribute to the country’s development.
“My expectation is for the incubates to receive all the support they need to test and to develop their ideas and go to the market,” he said.
Tace Agribiz Hub head based at Luanar Sera Gondwe said the programme is contributing to job creation by building human capital skills through the programme.
“We are working in collaboration with internal departments and externally with partners such as UNDP and EU to ensure that the youth either get employed or establish an enterprise,” he said.