March 22, 2018 / 6:01 PM / a month ago

Mastercard Foundation to spend $100 million in Rwanda to help create jobs

NAIROBI (Reuters) - Mastercard Foundation, a private Canada-based charity, said on Thursday it will invest $100 million in Rwanda to train young people with skills in order to reduce unemployment.

The project is part of a 10-year plan to help African countries create 30 million jobs for young people by 2030.

Reeta Roy, the foundation’s chief executive officer, told Reuters they would spend more than $2 billion to create 30 million “dignified jobs” for young people on the continent by 2030.

“Our focus is on individual drivers of growth in individual countries,” she told Reuters in a telephone interview.

It will set aside $50 million over the next five years in Rwanda to provide 30,000 young people with skills in technology and digital literacy in the hospitality and tourism sector, the country’s biggest foreign exchange earner.

The balance will be spent on in recruiting educators and training them to equip you people with the skills required for jobs.

Like other countries on the continent, the East African nation has struggled to create jobs for its young people.

It has 125,000 young people joining the labor market every year, with more than 65 percent of 14- to 35-year-olds deemed underemployed, the Foundation said.

Africa is projected to be the youngest continent in the world by 2050, with its youth population expected to double from the current 480 million to 840 million, according to the African Development Bank.

Editing by Raissa Kasolowsky

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