Africa's employment gridlock and how to decongest it
A quick peek into the gridlock
As I write this there are graduates on the Streets of Lagos, Cape Town, Kampala, Nairobi, Dar-es-Salaam, Addis-Ababa and Brazaville. In my work in Africa, have also met non-graduates in various categories. These were functionally engaged in businesses termed as 'informal-sector'. They were the City backbone and had the best places for cheaper food, transport and businesses spaces. Many employed graduates. That is in Africa.
Education provides skills and gives many opportunities to get into the formal sector. Here they enjoy job security, salaries, trappings and means to improve on themselves further. They pursue their goals with confidence and command respect in society. Education gives one the possibility to earn sums of money commensurate to their levels of learning and skills.
The labour market: What is that? Careers? Buildings with offices? Larger storeyed buildings with big notices calling on applicants to fill in short and long term job contracts?In Africa we meet graduates taking up jobs in; artisanry, masonry, construction, manufacturing, sales, indigenous herb pharmaceuticals, transport, running video-music kiosks, second-hand trade, teaching, music, dance and drama, modelling and staying at their parents' homes. In USA, we see many graduates taking up jobs as; waiters, waitresses, sales-persons, manufacturing, construction, internet-based bussinesses,car detailing and call center operatives.
A quick look into who constitute this change and what degrees they carry reveals that more liberal Arts graduates.
In Africa and other parts of the world, some advice is called for:
1. Governments have long promised loans to students but the loans are long coming.
2. Students should use their time at Universities to 'sandwich' into shorter certificate courses which teach targeted skills.
3. Cooperatives and Communities where members come together to engage in say, agricultural production should be promoted.
4. The idea of training young peope ( whether graduates or not) in job-related skills and Technical skills should also be a priority and an addition to Liberal Arts Degrees.
5. The Rural-City migration is follwing a pattern of social amenities which are better. Governments should make rural cmmunities equally amenable. Jobs will follow this.
Decongesting the employment gridlock of Africa
1. The genuine effort to promote trade & investment opportunities for sustainable economic development in Africa must involve the young, disabled and the Diasporas.
2. To invest in trade and infrastructure development ( http://www.porttechnology.org/news/africa_takes_centre_stage_at_the_2013_world_ports_trade_summit/). Africa needs to lobby or make partnerships with countries or well established port authorities with technological know how to establish such infrastructure that promotes trade, storage and procurement of goods.
3. Africa must be ready to bring governance to the grass root. The governance must be such that it involves grass root communities and empowers them to be responsive to needs in an appropriate way.
4. To create a fora for partnerships and joint ventures in Africa. There are investments single countries cannot do alone. The infrastructure development will require regional cooperation. Investment in GIS Technology will go a long way in making Africa a capital investment by 2030
5. Identify a single platform to coordinate initiatives towards poverty eradication in Africa.
6. To promote strategies to avoid recession in Africa. The Weather Forecasting Technologies, Welfare systems and Investments in hedge funds as a culture should be established in Africa.
7. To promote export and import within and from Africa. Industries such as motor vehicle assembly, pharmaceutical industries, garment, large scale production and 'going green' should be the next step investments.
8. The promotion of commercialization of services, packaging and engaging in research breakthroughs from Africa with the intention of attracting markets
9. Establish mechanisms to showcase achievements in Africa.
10. Ignite and rejuvenate interest in trade & investments in Africa. Involve organized grass root groups and Diasporas.
It is possible to eradicate Poverty From Africa
Is it possible to eradicate Poverty from Africa?
How Africa needs to do business unusually
i. The coasts, shores and ports, aerospace, rails, warehousing, recycling, quarries and construction:
Africa has a very large surface area adjacent to Indian Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, Mediterranean sea and Red Sea. There are a multitude of inland lakes and big rivers. Africa has large tracts of land it can use to establish large agricultural estates, housing estates, industrial complexes and other investments There are different investments that can be made on the empty lands, shores and banks. Africa can partner with countries that port technologies and are ready to share these technologies ( http://www.porttechnology.org) . The following is a list of some new industries Africa needs to invest into:
3. mooring equipment
4. loading and offloading systems
5. deck machinery
6. global offshore
7. shipping markets,
8. life cycle services with a large installed base and service scope
9. flexibility of business models that focus on high-value activities and engineering competence
10. creation of room for new skilled employees in Africa
11. new forms of management teams
12. docking of cargo vessels
13. automated mooring
14. shore power systems
15. vessel traffic management systems
16. managing buoys and mapping under sea growths
17. port structure, architecture, equipment and furniture
18. container handling
19. customs and security
20. dry bulk and specialist handling
21. environment, health and safety
22. liquid, chemical and gas handling
23. mooring and berthing
24. port planning, design, dredging and construction
26. ship building
27. terminal logistics
28. container handling
29. dangerous and hazardous materials
30. dredging and coastal development
31. global terminal operators
33. Aids to navigation ( ATON)
34. warehouse and logistics
35. container handling and terminal handling
ii. Civil Engineering and Construction:
Africa needs to have a critical number of heavy machinery units in form of;
4. low loaders
5. mobile plants ( excavators, lift trucks and site dumpers)
iii. Ware housing, logistics and distribution:
This is another area in which Africa needs to invest. There are opportunities ranging from repairs, operation and other activities. The following is the list ( http://www.zonesafe.net) of machinery;
1. fork lift trucks
2. order pickers
3. stand up trucks
4. powered pallet trucks
5. reach trucks
iv. waste and recycling:
waste management and recycling activities in Africa will include: waste transfer stations, material recovery facilities, scrap yards and land fill sites involve use of a wide range of industrial vehicles and mobile plants;
2. fork lift trucks
3. 360o excavators
4. front loading shovels
5. mobile cranes
v. quarries and mining:
quarrying involves operating mechanically propelled vehicles which are part of the equipment of the quarry. The vehicles are:
1. dump trucks
5. loading shovels
6. face shovels
9. ancillary vehicles