German software company SAP and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) have announced a plan to help alleviate Africa’s unemployment crisis. The two organisations plan to create 450 jobs for highly qualified personnel in the IT sector in ten African countries.
The collaboration was recently presented in Berlin by German Development Minister Gerd Müller and by Michael Kleinemeier, member of the Executive Board of SAP SE and head of SAP Digital Business Services.
It targets unemployed university graduates who will undergo a three-month training programme, followed by assistance to help them find jobs in local companies.
The programme will cover Algeria, Angola, Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria and Tunisia. According to SAP, these countries have great potential for jobs and growth in the digital sector, but they lack well-trained specialists who can support companies and institutions as they introduce and operate software products.
The project addresses this bottleneck. Its first phase will start this year in Egypt, Ethiopia, Morocco, Tunisia and Nigeria. As part of the overall programme, 600 unemployed university graduates will receive training and certification for jobs in the local IT sector, the aim being to place at least three out of four programme graduates into employment. This means that a minimum of 450 new jobs could be created which employers previously could not fill because applicants did not have the necessary skills.
“Africa’s young people need opportunities for the future and they urgently need jobs that are viable and that help close the digital divide and make headway on development,” explained said German Development Minister Gerd Müller.
“To that end, we have to seize the great opportunities offered by digital technology. That will only be possible by working together with the private sector. I thus greatly welcome our cooperation with SAP. We need more projects of this type in order to create lasting momentum for Africa’s development, especially in the field of technology,” Müller added.
SAP Executive Board Member Michael Kleinemeier noted that Africa has the youngest population in the world. By 2050, its population will double, reaching more than 2.5 billion.
“Giving young people digital skills and IT training will create jobs and boost growth in Africa. Our new collaboration with the BMZ provides additional opportunities for Africa’s young people and helps the continent to tap its enormous potential,” he said.
The joint programme is expected to cover a period of three years. It will be implemented by the SAP Training and Development Institute as part of SAP’s established Young Professional Program, which has already created more than 2,200 jobs for jobseekers with higher education degrees in 22 countries around the world.