Ms Melanie Hauenstein, UNDP Resident Representative a.i is delivering a speech during the launching of the Labour Market Assessment in Tripoli. Photo: @UNDP Libya/Malek Elmaghrebi

Tripoli – A new assessment of the Libyan labour market attributes a key role to the private sector as a driver for economic recovery and the country’s future prosperity. Agriculture, construction, automobile and care services have the highest potential to generate decent employment for Libyans and migrants alike.

The recent study identified private sector industries/businesses with high potential to boost job creation in the country’s most important economic regions, including Tripoli, Benghazi, Sabha, Misrata, Sirte, Bayda, Ajdabya, Kufra, Derna, Ubari, Ghat, Bani Waleed, Sabratha, Kikla and Zliten. According to the assessment, Libya’s private sector is expected to be the main driver of economic development in Libya in the years to come.

"The study states that the stereotype about recognized vocation in the society contributed to the huge unemployment of large groups of graduates who are not needed by the labor market, while there are other sectors that need vocation workers, not university graduates. Therefore, the Ministry of Labour seeks for alternative solutions such as supporting the private sector, entrepreneurship and development,"said the Minister of Labour Ali Al-Abed Al-Reda Abu Azoum at the presentation of the assessment of the Libyan labour market in Tripoli on 2 September 2021.

"These assessments were commissioned to provide a strong evidence base for the development of inclusive labour market policy for Libya that bolsters economic and social development while ensuring the rights of all workers in Libya, including migrant workers are protected," declared the Assistant Secretary General, Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator for Libya Georgette Gagnon.

The study also highlights significant gaps between the skills currently needed and sought for by the private sector, and the skills offered by the Libyan labour force. It recommends measures to the government and other key stakeholders to bridge these gaps and bring more people into training for the job market. Key challenges in accessing decent and productive employment for workers are also highlighted.

"Getting people ready for the job market is the central aim of the 2021 Labour Market Assessment; we need to better understand what skill sets and knowledge businesses need to succeed. This study is part of the European Union's initiatives to support the government's policy making and contribute to Libya's economic development," underlined Ambassador José Sabadell, Head of the European Union Delegation to Libya.

"This Labour Market Assessment project is just the first page of mapping where the labour market is and where it should go. It needs to be led to economic and industrial development in Libya as well as to peace and prosperity for Libyans, " said Masaki Amadera, Chargé d’Affaires of Japan and Special Coordinator for Libya."Japan is always ready to make as many efforts as possible together with our Libyan friends. "

The assessment, which was conducted by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) and financed by the European Union and Japan, also looks at host communities and the contribution of migrants to the local economies.

"According to the latest statistics, 88% of migrants reported economic reasons as the primary motive for their migration to Libya, " IOM Libya Chief of Mission, Federico Soda, said. "While regular migration can provide economic opportunities for migrants and their families, this assessment provides a roadmap to harness the available capacities and to fuel economic growth in Libya."

"Private sector engagement is essential to tackle socio-economic issues and to advance inclusive sustainable development in the longer term," UNDP Resident Representative a.i, Melanie Hauenstein said. "UNDP is working to increase job opportunities for all, including the most vulnerable categories of society and contributing to forge social cohesion in the country."

The ultimate goal of this assessment is to increase the engagement and participation of the domestic and migrant workforce in the private sector businesses and therefore enhance the economic activity and social cohesion in the respective regions of Libya.

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