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Rural youth are an important yet underutilised resource for agricultural growth and economic development in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). In rural areas, the prevalence of vulnerable, low-quality jobs constitutes the main labour market challenge. The International Labour Organization estimates that among the working youth in SSA as many as 80% are employed in the informal economy, typically considered a more vulnerable form of employment, and close to 70% are poor. Many of those young people live in rural areas. Given that the agriculture sector remains the most important economic sector in the region, policies that support its development and increase the human capacities of rural youth can significantly improve employment opportunities and quality.

This policy Brief is based on the article: von Braun J and Kofol C (2017) Expanding Youth Employment in the Arab Region and Africa. ZEF Working Paper No. 155. Bonn: Center for Development Research, University of Bonn.