The World Bank has put the unemployment rate in Nigeria at 22 per cent while the youth unemployment rate is 38 per cent.
The Team Leader and representative of World Bank Country representative, Professor Foluso Okunmadewa, made the disclosure at the Youth Employment and Social Support Operation (YESSO) organised by Subsidy Reinvestment Programme (SURE-P), in Abuja.
Decrying the high percentage of youth unemployment, he said the country should do something about this as Nigeria’s youth hold the key to achieving Vision 20:2020, adding that 15 to 35-year olds account for close to 60 per cent of Nigeria’s population.
Noting that this figure is about 30 per cent of the workforce of Nigeria’s population, he added that approximately four million Nigerians entered into the labour market annually.
Apart from unemployment, he also noted that Nigeria had low education outcomes with considerable dropout rate of between 12 per cent 15 per cent despite Universal Basic Education (UBEC).
Stressing that 16 per cent of the youth, amounting to 10 million persons, had never attended school, the World Bank Country Representative said the aim of organising the programme was to reduce youth unemployment and increase human capital development of the poor.
“The aim of the operation is to increase access of the poor to youth employment opportunities, social services and strengthen safety nets system in participating states,” he said.
In addition to this, he said YESSO was expected to strengthen existing functional institutions in Federal and participating state governments to provide conditional cash transfer to core poor and vulnerable groups for education and health services.