In vision 2020, one of Rwanda’s principal goals is to decrease the population dependent on agricultural activities from the current 72% in 2006 to 50% by the year 2020. Taking into account the current population growth, this would mean creating 2.2 million jobs in the off-farm sector by 2020. The uninterrupted high economic growth that Rwanda has registered since 2000 has been a noteworthy achievement. However, the weak point of economic performance has been the limited shift from a low productivity, primary-based economy to a high-productivity economy based on industry and services. The majority of the jobs created have been in paid agriculture, most of which (over 60%) are poor jobs.
The country’s high population growth rate makes structural and inclusive transformation particularly urgent to create non-agricultural and higher-productivity jobs for one of the fastest growing labour forces in the world. The current 104,000 annual off-farm job creation rate lags behind the targeted 200,000 jobs and the annual average 125,000 new entrants in the labour market. Additional employment opportunities are needed not only for those who enter the labour force annually, but also for: (1) those who are currently unemployed; (2) those who are underemployed; (3) those who are classified as the working poor.
The purpose of the project
The purpose of this joint programme is to support the Government of Rwanda to contribute towards Rwanda’s inclusive growth, economic transformation and accelerated poverty reduction goals as encapsulated in Vision 2020 and the second Economic Development and Poverty Reduction Strategy (EDPRS 2) as well as to the attainment of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). Through these strategies, the Government of Rwanda (GoR) aims to move half of the Rwandan labour-force from a low-productive agricultural dominated farm jobs to a more productive industry and services-based economy, thus reducing underemployment and unemployment especially among the youth and women in both urban and rural areas. It is through this entry point that the joint programme will support national efforts to achieve the youth and women employment programming results expected from the second EDPRS and UNDAP and will contribute towards attaining a structural shift from the current 104,000 off-farm annual job creation rate to the targeted 200,000 jobs.
The joint UN flagship programme on youth and women employment is designed to contribute to achieving the youth employment targets as defined in the second EDPRS and mostly aligned to priorities identified under NEP. Furthermore, this flagship programme responds to the fourth outcome of UNDAP which hinges on Skills development, decent employment opportunities, and urbanization process, for quality livelihoods both in urban and rural areas, especially for youth and women.
The different project outcomes are the following:
- Outcome 1: National capacities enhanced to promote employment intensive growth and mainstream youth employment in programmes and budgets
- Outcome 2: Youth and women Skills and competences enhanced for employability and enterprises competitiveness
- Outcome 3: Job creation and enterprise development enhanced through entrepreneurship development, inclusive financial services, and access to markets
- Outcome 4: Labour Market Intermediation Services enhanced for youth economic empowerment opportunities
- Outcome 5: Programme Coordination, management and oversight strengthened
- Output 1.1: Planning capacities for an employment intensive growth environment reinforced
- Output 1.2: Coordination Capacities for the national employment program strengthened
- Output 2.1: Youth and women Skills and capacities for productive employment developed
- Output 2.2: Capacity of the vocational training systems for quality employment-orientation enhanced
- Output 3.1 Effective policy environment to facilitate resource allocation of financial institutions that target businesses owned by young entrepreneurs enhanced
- Output 3.2 Improved quality and tailored outreach of financial services for young entrepreneurs provided through existing financial institutions
- Output 3.3 Financial education programmes promoted to encourage youth to learn about credit and savings as well creating greater demand for financial services
- Output 3.4 Youth and women enterprises have increased access to local, regional and international markets
- Output 3.5 Youth Entrepreneurship programs and Capacities of Service providers improved for enhanced entrepreneurship trainings and for self-employment
- Output 4.1: Evidence based decision making in the labour market enhanced
- Output 4.2: Increased awareness about available training and employment opportunities in ICT among youth
- Output 5.1 Direct Support for capacity building of IPs
- Output 5.2 One UN Quality Control including audits, evaluation and communication