This Research has been developed by Deloitte in the Middle East to highlight opportunities for Arab youth employment in the Media, Hospitality and Technology Industries in the MENA region.
|Youth Employment in MENA Region|
|Overview of Youth Unemployment in MENA Region:
•MENA’s population is projected to increase with a significant proportion being of prime working-age (24%).
•MENA’s youth unemployment rate is considered among the highest in the world (30%).
•Women youth unemployment rate is higher than the average unemployment rate.
•The growth of the prime working-age population and the limited job opportunities constitute an obstacle for economic trigger with a rise in the unemployment rate.
Main Reasons for Youth Unemployment in MENA Region
The main contributors to youth unemployment in the MENA region are:
Mismatch of skills: Graduates in the MENA region are not fully equipped with the proper soft and technical skills because theeducation systems are not completely in line with market requirements.
Competition from more qualified expatriates: Expatriates from more developed economies are usually preferred over nationals because they are perceived to be more qualified.
Youth university major preferences: There is a growth in the level of education in the MENA region; however the majority of the Arab youth are considering majoring in business rather than majoring in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, which are necessary nowadays.
Limited employment opportunities for women: Despite the gradual involvement of women in the labor force, the MENA region still have the highest unemployment rates in the world due to cultural reservations resulting in discrimination through education and employment opportunities.
Preference for public sector jobs: Arabs prefer to work in the public sector because of the short working hours and relatively higher salary packages despite their stagnation due to the oversized public sector.
Political instability: The Arab spring, ongoing wars and political instabilities in the MENA region have negatively affected theeconomic growth and led to its stagnation making it difficult to generate employment opportunities.
Drop of oil prices: The drop of oil prices pushed the MENA oil exporter countries to cut their spending in order to control their budget impacting negatively the Arab employment.
Unsecure job opportunities: There is a need to import qualified candidates in order to match the skills gap in the GCC market; however, non-nationals have limited rights compared with nationals and are facing difficulties to obtain a visa.