Africa has more people under the age of 20 than anywhere else in the world, and the continent’s population is growing fast. Its front-line countries, like Nigeria, where 54% of young people were out of work in 2012, face a debilitating unemployment crisis which is yet to be tackled effectively.
Unfortunately, it can sometimes appear that the people least troubled by the scale of the problem are those entrusted with solving it. Africa’s population is set to double to 2.4 billion by 2050, and at the moment, this is not something worth celebrating.
The scary reality is that, if the continent does not start to create jobs, this demographic bump will develop into a huge burden. We are faced with a generation of people unable to create a decent income, save money or earn a pension – a huge bottleneck for a continent already bursting at the seams with poverty.
It is therefore encouraging to see movement across the continent, with people and organizations understanding we can’t wait for governments to act. From the Tony Elumelu Foundation to the Mara Group, we are seeing an emphasis on entrepreneurship and job creation.
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