HomeNewsSub-Saharan Africans underemployed: IMF

Sub-Saharan Africans underemployed: IMF


THE International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said sub-Saharan Africa needs to expand the availability and productivity of job opportunities as a way of addressing unemployment.

By Business Reporter

In a recent report from the IMF on the regional economic outlook of Sub-Saharan Africa the Bretton Woods institution said most people in the region live from labour income and the number of poor people in the region is still high.

“The demographic dividend will result in a significant increase in the working age population. By 2020, more than half of sub-Saharan Africa’s population will be below the age of 25, thereby creating massive employment and growth opportunities,” the IMF said in the report.

IMF said the huge populations need to be absorbed into productive activities to help reduce poverty rates in due course.

“Most of the sub-Saharan African population works in low-productivity agriculture and service activities using methods that do not benefit from economies of scale, partly reflecting low labour skills,” the report showed.

According to IMF the region is characterised by very low formal sector employment and very low unemployment rates and a large active population leading to underemployment.

This is true in the Zimbabwean situation where 20% of the population are formally employed and the rest were absorbed in the informal sector of the economy.
Unemployment remains a major challenge in this country where over 10 000 students graduate from colleges each year.

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