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ILO, NLC seek better development deals for youths

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ILO Director-General Guy Ryder

ILO Director-General Guy Ryder

The International Labour Organisation (ILO) and Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC ) have called for greater access to productive and decent work for youth as the best way young people can realise their aspirations, improve their living conditions and actively participate in societal development.

Speaking on the occasion of the International Youth Day, the Director-General of ILO, Guy Ryder, said young women and men are shaping global future and have the potential to accelerate progress on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

He added: “Today, we celebrate their leadership in ensuring sustainable consumption and production patterns. However their creativity and leadership hinge on opportunities to achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all, a key transversal goal of the Agenda.”

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The ILO Chief insisted that decent work for youth strengthens economies and creates a cadre of young consumers, savers and producers, saying there are many examples of young people taking a leading role in finding and implementing sustainable solutions, while addressing the youth employment challenge.

“Decent work for youth emerges where rights and opportunities converge. It guarantees that young women and men can raise their voices and exercise their leadership, today and tomorrow,” he said.

Ryder stressed that the ILO is committed to promoting the expansion of employment opportunities for young people everywhere. It is a formidable task that requires collaboration, action and know-how.

As part of activities marking the Day, Ryder hinted that the ILO was launching the What Works in Youth Employment knowledge platform, a resource designed to improve understanding of those policies and actions that work to improve labour market outcomes for young people.

He explained: “Building on our 2012 Call for Action, this knowledge platform draws attention to key intervention areas that are addressing the youth employment challenge, including skills training, entrepreneurship promotion, employment services, subsidised employment, employment and economic policies, and rights for young people.

“The platform is a knowledge anchor of the UN Global Initiative on Decent Jobs for Youth, which aims to expand action and partnerships on youth employment and shape global investments for youth, ensuring that youth have the opportunity and choice to build their skills and transform their energy and ideas into products and services that foster a cleaner and more sustainable planet.”

He posited that indeed there is now enough collective experience to show what works.

Ryder added: “We know that young people have the dynamism, will and resolve to shape a better future for all. What we need now is policy action and collaboration across the board to scale-up investments in youth employment. This is indispensable if we are to achieve our collective ambition of poverty eradication and a sustainable future.”


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