Top 10 Countries With Lowest Unemployment Rates in Africa

Africa has one of the highest levels of unemployment in the world. Since 2000, more than 27,000 Africans have died while trying to illegally enter Europe via the sea. The search for jobs and an escape from high levels of poverty across the continent is a major motivation.

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Here’s a quick look at some of the countries in Africa that have the lowest unemployment rate.

1. Botswana

Botswana has a population of about two million people. It is one of the fastest growing economies in the world. Unemployment rate is about 18 per cent.

The government increased its goods and services exports by 7.2 per cent in 2015 to boost employment. Its initiatives to fight unemployment include Ipelegeng, a project that hires unskilled people, Livestock Management and Infrastructure Development and Integrated Support Programme for Arable Development.

2. Zambia

This landlocked, southern African nation has a population of 13 million people. Zambia’s unemployment rate stands at 14.1 per cent. Its government created technical and vocational training schools for both formal and informal employment.

The National Action Plan on Youth Employment was also created to develop frameworks for monitoring youths and creating better jobs.

Donor communities have also helped. Youth Skills Enterprise Initiative, meant to provide Zambian youths with capital and opportunities, has been set up.

3. Tunisia

With an unemployment rate of 15.4 per cent, Tunisia is one of the leading economies in North Africa. The country has adopted a Green Jobs Platform, which is funded by the Islamic Development Bank at a cost of $3.8 million (Sh395 million).

The project is aimed at creating jobs for university graduates. At least 50 start-ups have been created. The Tunisian Solidarity Bank funds individuals with at least $35,000 (Sh3.6 million).

4. Egypt

One of Africa’s leading oil exporters, Egypt’s unemploymant rate stands at 12.77 per cent. The North African country rolled out projects in December 2012 to create 750,000 jobs through micro-projects and youth employment.

Egypt also entered into 21 deals with China in the energy, banking and infrastructure sectors which will create more jobs. Online taxi hailing service Uber provides 2,000 jobs a month.

5. Algeria

Algeria’s unemployment rate was 11.2 per cent in 2015. In 2013, the government adopted a policy, ‘Marshall Plan’ that forced companies to hire workers within their locations.

Young entrepreneurs and unemployed persons wishing to start their own business are able to get interest-free loans, under the plan. Ministries and state parastatals were advised to award sub-contracting deals to the locals who are in micro-business.

6. Mauritius

The island in the Indian Ocean has a population of 1.3 million people. In 2015, unemployment rate stood at 7.8 per cent. The government diversified its economy to reduce over-reliance on its main source of income, tourism.

Its government started initiatives to create 15, 000 jobs yearly. Labour regulations have been amended to protect the employees. It targets to create 10,000 jobs by 2019.

7. Ghana

Ghana has a population of about 27.2 million. Its unemployment rate is about 5.2 per cent. Microsoft and International Institute of Communication and Development started a platform named, TizaaWorks. TizaaWorks equips graduates and school leavers with the right skills for the various sectors in the nation.

Its government created the National Youth Service for the university graduates and National Youth Employment Program to help unemployed people get jobs.

8. Rwanda

Rwanda has a population of 11.34 million people. It has one of the lowest unemployment rates in Africa, at 3.4 per cent. About 60 per cent of the working population has more than one job. The youth lead in agricultural jobs which form 70 per cent of all employment. Employment is higher in the rural areas. Its government targets to create 20,000 jobs yearly.

9. Seychelles

Seychelles has a population of about 90, 000 people. It unemployment rate is 2.7 per cent. In 2014, the nation adopted new regulations to safeguard and create more jobs for its citizens.

The 2016-2020 Country Strategy Paper aimed at creating more jobs for the youth and also diversifying its economy. There has also been creation of environment friendly jobs.

10. Benin

The West Africa nation of Benin has a population of 10.6 million people. The nation’s unemployment rate was 2.4 per cent in 2013. In February 2016, the country started the construction of its first ever digital city, Benin Smart City. Once complete, the project will create 50,000 jobs.


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