Smeda, UNDP to create self-employment opportunities for youth

Amanullah Khan

Karachi—The Small and Medium Enterprises Development Authority (SMEDA) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP have joined hands to create self employment opportunities for the young start ups. The Union of Small and Medium Enterprises (UNISAME) president Zulfikar Thaver welcoming the initiative has said self-employment is the answer for unemployment amongst the youth who are very restless and need vocational guidance and facilities for starting their own business. This is a much needed program and will benefit the youth who have the aptitude for business and need support.
Smeda and UNDP Pakistan have joined hands to provide better self-employment opportunities to youth in Karachi (Lyari, Korangi, Sultanabad, Malir, Orang i& Others). This endeavor would enable unemployed youth with limited opportunities to transform their ideas into business projects. More than 31 percent of the population of Pakistan consists of youth. A large portion (32%) of youth is uneducated with little or no technical vocational skills, making this segment of society vulnerable to being drawn to violence and extremism. United Nations Development Program’s (UNDP) Youth Employment Project is a response to this challenge. It is a three-year project supported by U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). The project aims to train 13,360 youth from targeted areas by December 2017. The project envisions that at a majority of these trainees will secure employment six months after completing their training courses.
In an inauguration ceremony of this project, Mukesh Kumar, Provincial Chief- SMEDA Sindh said that Smeda is committed to promote youth entrepreneurship in Pakistan and Smeda has successfully implemented many youth entrepreneurship programs in Pakistan and particularly in Sindh. Qasim Naqvi, Deputy Manager, UNDP Pakistan Youth Employment Project said that 500 youth would be trained at different centers in Karachi.
Mukesh Kumar, Provincial Chief SMEDA Sindh said that Smeda would not only provide business training but would also provide hand holding support to youth in Karachi. Kumar Further told that Smeda would also create market linkages and access to micro credit. In addition, Training of Trainers (ToT) will be provided to institute and factory representatives, to enable them to integrate soft and life skills training into the regular technical training courses, and in turn augment the personal and professional development of the trainees, supporting career growth in the garment sector.

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