28 Mar 2011

Conference puts spotlight on youth unemployment in Pacific

6:41 pm on 28 March 2011

A conference is being held in Vanuatu this week to discuss growing unemployment among young people in the Pacific.

Ten Pacific countries are represented, with government officials, youth employment specialists, and youth advocates speaking.

In some countries like Solomon Islands youth unemployment is as high as 60 percent.

Sushil Ram from the Commonwealth Youth Programme's Pacific office, says the youth population has out-paced employment growth.

"Every year we see more young people, school leavers, school drop-outs joining the labour force. The number of jobs that are created is not increasing but the number seeking the job is increasing so the trend is increased unemployment."

Sushil Ram says if governments don't address the problem it could lead to serious social problems.