Big news from The World Bank, which announced a $100m project to support Morocco’s efforts to create jobs. Morocco has recently launched several initiatives which will dovetail with the World Bank project, including agreements with private sector providers of vocational training, new support programs for NGOs, a new draft law to promote micro-enterprises, and the establishment of a National Observatory for Employment:
The World Bank Board of Executive Directors approved today a US$100 million project in support of the government of Morocco’s ongoing efforts to boost employment and improve the quality of jobs. The project will focus on ensuring the skills taught in universities and vocational training programs match the needs of the labor market, increasing the efficiency of employment services and broadening their reach to disadvantaged segments of the population, promoting micro-enterprises while formalizing the employment conditions for the many currently employed by them, and reinforcing the governance of the labor market.
The Second Skills and Employment Development Policy Loan (SEDPL2) is the second in a programmatic series of two projects aimed at addressing employment. A principal aim of the SEDPL2 is to support the development of a clearer path from school to work. The reform of educational and training programs will improve the job prospects of graduates, by equipping them with the right skills, while more effective employment services will match them with available jobs. The project will also support government plans to expand the reach of the national employment agency, ANAPEC, beyond graduates, to offer services to less-qualified individuals. Another policy initiative supported by the SEDPL2 will be to create a new legal status for self-employed individuals who want to exit the shadow economy and pay taxes, in exchange for a package of benefits; including access to credit and affordable social security. Finally, the project will contribute to improving the quality and availability of information needed to make employment policy decisions.
“Unemployment continues to be a critical development challenge for Morocco,” said Simon Gray, World Bank Country Director for the Maghreb Region. “The government is taking significant steps to improve how institutions respond to the needs of young people, in terms of providing them with the skills that are most relevant to the job market, as well as empowering them to create their own opportunities. We are pleased to be working closely with the authorities to support these and other efforts to boost employment”...[Full Story]