MENA Generation 2030 report highlights the historic opportunity for countries in the MENA region to invest in the human capital of children and young people, enhancing their prospects for productive employment and accelerating economic growth. The report, provides an in-depth analysis of demographic projections for children, adolescents and youth in the countries of the MENA regions and explores their implications for policy-making and programming in the areas of health, protection, education, transition to employment, civic engagement and the empowerment of girls and women in the region.
The changemakers in this region are its children and young people. Children, adolescents and youth of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region have the potential to contribute to peace and stability in the region and the expansion of economic opportunities for all. Unlocking the potential of youth and reaping the demographic dividend requires the engagement of the private sector and collaboration across all stakeholders, along with young people themselves.
Now is the window of opportunity. During the first half of the 21st century an unprecedented proportion of the MENA population will transition into their most productive years. Almost all countries in MENA will see an increase in the number and proportion of children, adolescents and youth in their populations during the years to 2030. The most favorable period for the region as a whole will be between 2018 and 2040, when the dependency ratio is predicted to be the lowest.
Action is needed now and requires the attention, energy, resources and ingenuity of all – governments and private sector to work with young people to solve the greatest challenges in the region. This includes expanding coverage and improving the quality of health and education services, ensuring education systems nurture the skills demanded by the rapidly changing economy, and expanding training and employment opportunities for young people.
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