CDA Snipes Remarks at USAID/Djibouti Youth Employment Program Launch

Chargé d’Affaires Snipes Remarks at USAID/Djibouti Youth Employment Program Launch
November 05, 2023

His Excellency Moustapha Mohamed Mahamoud, Minister of Education and Vocational Training.
His Excellency Omar Abdi Said, Minister of Labor, in charge of Formalization and Social Protection.
Mr. Youssouf Mousssa Dawaleh, President of the Chamber of Commerce.
Ms. Helen Boyle, Vice-President of Education Development Center.
Honorable Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,

We are here this morning to address unemployment, particularly youth unemployment, which is rightly a top priority of the Djiboutian government, and one shared by the United States.  As a long-term and committed partner to Djibouti, the U.S. Government is seeking to build on its support to grow the Djiboutian economy and help Djiboutian youth gain meaningful employment.

I am honored to be here to launch the new USAID Youth Employment program.

This 16-million-dollar program is designed to work together with the Djiboutian government and the private sector over the next four years to provide youth with the technical and vocational training they need to improve their readiness to enter Djibouti’s labor market.

The program is different from previous successful efforts to assist in workforce development by having a specific focus on permanent job placement for Djiboutian youth. That means this program seeks to make tangible positive change by helping young people into permanent jobs. The program will also broaden private sector engagement with Djiboutian, American, and international companies to hire more Djiboutians.

Together with the USAID team at the Embassy, I wanted to express appreciation for the way the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Labor, and the private sector have collaborated in the design of this program. We are encouraged by the shared commitment to pursue innovative approaches to the complex challenge of youth unemployment. And our collaboration has already resulted in a detailed skills gap analysis, which will help identify the economic sectors with the most potential for growth, as well as the skills youth need to succeed in those sectors.

Our project will support the entire ecosystem of organizations involved in developing more employment opportunities. In addition to partnering with our government stakeholders, we will work hand in hand with educational institutions, private sector companies, donors, and young people themselves. Bringing the youth directly into the partnership will give them a voice in shaping their own future.

Through our long-standing commitment, partnership, and dialogue, we will continue to explore ways to help Djibouti advance its economy and diversify into new sectors. Today’s program launch is an important part of that overall effort.

In closing, I would like to thank all of the stakeholders involved in the Youth Employment program, and in particular the Ministries for their close partnership today and in the future.

Thank you.