Unemployment is a major problem in Bosnia and Herzegovina, with young people particularly affected. About 62% of young people between the ages of 15 and 24 are out of work. On the one hand, there is a lack of jobs available, and on the other hand, the efforts by the government to respond to the high rate of unemployment are inadequate. The longer these young people are excluded from the labour market, the more hopeless they feel and the more they lose confidence in those institutions that should be supporting them.
Prospects for young, unemployed adults in Bosnia and Herzegovina
The aim of the Youth Employment Project (YEP) is to help public employment bodies in Bosnia and Herzegovina to improve their offer and to introduce youth-friendly services, such as individual and group careers advice for unemployed young adults between 18 and 30 years. Together with local partners, YEP also promotes new job opportunities linked to social entrepreneurship models.
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Employment & economic development
Business support & economic inclusion
- Foreign private sector North
The combination with unfavourable business conditions, and unstable political system and an education system which is disconnected from market needs, leaves young people in BiH in a very difficult situation. Efficient Public Employment Services (PES) can play a key role in providing better opportunities for young people on the labour market.
Functional and responsive Job intermediation system, provided by PES throughout BiH, contributes to increased employment of young people in the country.
Young unemployed people aged 18-30 years, with the focus on those being at high risk of social exclusion (long-term unemployed and unemployed woman in general). Other marginalised groups (minorities, disabled) will be targeted with specially designed programs.
1. PES improve their performance, strengthen their mediation role in the labour market and are more successful in activating and placing young people into jobs.
2. Young unemployed and socially excluded persons participate in and use new innovative employment models, active labour market measures offered by PES and create functional social enterprises.
3. PES, employers, education system and local governments strengthen and structure the coordination of reform processes, improve mutual communication as much as the public perception of their performance, contribute to the replication of successful employment models, and thereby increase labour market opportunities for young people.
Results from previous phases:
Since October 2011, 5’209 young unemployed people were offered for the first time counseling services provided by PES employees, resulting with 2’546 placed young people (target = 1’500). The performance management system for PES has been developed and introduced which will enable continues measurement of the PES performance. Created network of 25 Job Clubs offering group counseling services for young unemployed is fully integrated and financed by PES. 3 social enterprises registered and functional through the support to the small scale projects implemented by local NGOs and PES together.
|Directorate/federal office responsible||
Swiss cooperation with Eastern Europe
|Budget||Current phase Swiss budget CHF 5’795’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF 4’950’000|
|Project phases||Phase 4 01.04.2016 - 31.03.2022 (Current phase) Phase 3 01.10.2011 - 31.03.2016 (Completed) Phase 2 01.10.2008 - 30.09.2011 (Completed) Phase 1 15.08.2007 - 31.07.2008 (Completed)|
Creating career prospects for young people
The SDC is therefore supporting the Youth Employment Project (YEP), which aims to provide better prospects for young unemployed people. The project promotes state-run advisory services by introducing new working methods and supporting young people in their search for employment. At the same time, it uses social entrepreneurship to motivate the unemployed and support them in becoming self-reliant and able to create jobs for themselves. The aim is to capitalise on existing potential for sustainable business models. In addition, a network of 25 'job clubs' has been created, which, together with the public careers advice services, give young people the opportunity to improve their professional skills. It is important in this project that young people from socially disadvantaged groups are also given the opportunity to benefit from these new services.
By January 2017, 6,240 young unemployed adults had benefited from the support of the various job clubs. Since then, 2,665 of them have found employment. A further 7,511 new unemployed persons have received their first individual careers advice.
The SDC is supporting this project because access to the labour market is essential for young people, enabling them to regain better prospects for their lives and thereby continue to support the economy.