UfM Secretariat organises a high-level expert group meeting on job creation within the framework of its Med4Jobs initiative
PHOTO ©École de la deuxième chance de Marseille (E2C Marseille) 2016. UfM-labelled project MedNC – New Chance Mediterranean Network
Barcelona, 28 April 2016. The UfM Secretariat is further advancing the Mediterranean Initiative for Jobs (Med4Jobs) in coordination with key international institutions working in the field of job creation, including the International Labour Organization (ILO), the European Training Foundation (ETF), the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and the European Commission (EC).
More than 20 high-level representatives from these institutions gathered today at the UfM headquarters in Barcelona for the 3rd Meeting of the Med4Jobs Advisory Board. Participants discussed the next steps of the initiative and exchanged views on different emerging areas in the international agenda to promote employment in the region, namely Blue Growth, the Digital Economy and the Social & Solidarity Economy.
Med4Jobs is a UfM project-based, cross-sector initiative aimed at promoting and replicating effective and visible job creation projects, increasing the employability of young people and women, helping to bridge the gap between labour demand and supply and fostering a culture of entrepreneurship and private sector development. Med4Jobs also serves as a regional platform for dialogue on employment, for sharing best practices and for promoting stakeholder interaction and collaboration.
At present, Med4Jobs has identified up to 10 projects on the southern and northern shores of the Mediterranean, targeting more than 100,000 young beneficiaries and supporting the development of more than 800 SMEs from the region. Globally, these projects account for more than €130 million in investment in the region (this figure includes the construction of the Euro-Mediterranean University of Fes – See PHOTO GALLERY of the construction site)
In the words of Fathallah Sijilmassi, UfM Secretary General: “Fostering job creation and inclusive growth in the region is crucial to effectively advance human development, stability and integration. Youth employability is a key priority for the UfM; a shared priority for building the Mediterranean of tomorrow, since the future of our youth is the future of our region.”
Med4Jobs: a regional response to the common challenge of youth unemployment
Youth unemployment rates in the Mediterranean region are among the highest in the world with, on average, 25% unemployment, which is double the global average. This crucial issue affects countries on both the southern and the northern shores of the Mediterranean. In fact, the European average is 23%, but a higher rate can be seen in southern European countries, with over 50% in Greece and Spain, over 40% in Croatia and Italy and over 30% in Portugal.
Currently, almost 60% of the population in the Mediterranean region is under the age of 30. This represents an asset for the region; therefore, a positive and action-oriented regional agenda on youth employability is vital for unleashing the region’s human and economic potential capital and to contribute to stability and integration in the region.
UfM-labelled projects under Med4Jobs
Presently, 10 projects have already been labelled by the UfM within the framework of Med4Jobs. In addition to the political support of the 43 UfM Member States, the labelling facilitates access to funding and technical support. Further information on the 10 Med4Jobs projects can be found via the following links:
- Generation Entrepreneur
- Maharat Med – Developing Youth Employability & Entrepreneurial Skills
- MedNC – New Chance Mediterranean Network
- HOMERe – High Opportunity for Mediterranean Executive Recruitment
- Mediterranean Entrepreneurship Network
- Young Women as Job Creators
- The Euro-Mediterranean University of Fes
- Skills for Success – Employability Skills for Women
- Promoting women empowerment for inclusive and sustainable industrial development in the MENA region
- CEED GROW: Growing and Scaling Small and Medium-Sized Businesses
About the UfM
The Union for the Mediterranean (UfM) is an intergovernmental organisation bringing together 43 countries: 28 EU member states and 15 Southern and Eastern Mediterranean countries. It provides a platform for political dialogue, coordination, and regional cooperation.
The Secretariat of the Union for the Mediterranean, established in Barcelona in 2010, focuses on enhancing regional cooperation and integration through the implementation of regional cooperation projects and initiatives. The Secretariat has developed and accelerated the implementation of new regional projects that are key socio-economic and strategic drivers: more than 40 regional labelled projects worth over €5 billion in areas including inclusive growth, youth employability, women’s empowerment, promotion of student mobility, integrated urban development and sustainable development. The Secretariat works in close collaboration with government agencies and an active network of Euro-Mediterranean partners to assist project promoters throughout the entire project cycle, from technical assistance to project implementation, as well as financial planning and fundraising.