Investing in rural youth in the Asia and the Pacific region | Land Portal

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Date of publication: 
December 2019
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Thispaper characterizes the structural and rural transformation of the Asia and the Pacific region(APR), highlighting the implications for rural youth opportunities and challenges, and identifying andelaborating on the characteristics, opportunities and challenges related to rural youth inclusion. Nearly half of the population in Asia is urban, with the proportion projected to rise to 59 per cent by 2035.

Except for China, the majority of youth still reside in rural areas. Youth labour force participation ishigher in rural than urban areas, and for males than females. Rural youth in countries with lowstructural transformation and low rural transformation continue to rely on agriculture for employment; incountries with high levels of transformation, a majority of rural youth are now employed outsideagriculture (though it is still the biggest contributor to rural youth employment).

About one fifth of youthin Asia are not in education, employment or training. More than 86 per cent of employed youth in Asiaand the Pacific are in the informal sector, greater than the proportion of informal employment among adult workers.The full potential for structural transformation in APR may fail to be realized because of barriers facing rural youth in terms of migration,achieving full human development, gaining access to land, farmtechnology, financial services, and other enterprise support.

Promising areas for investing in the futureof rural youth are the following.
Access to land: there is some quantitative evidence showing the benefits of freehold titling programmes, which suggests opportunities for improving tenure for rural youth and especially women already cultivating land.

Education and human development: investments in school facilities in villages have beenfound toimprove enrolment and learning outcomes. The farmer field school approach is also effective.Information and communication technology (ICT) can promote agricultural extension, which appears toaugur well for youth, who appear to be pioneer adopters of ICT in rural villages.

Expansion of vocational education is beneficial especially where its incidence is low. In Asia, linkage with futureemployment is the single most important factor in training success. Sexual and reproductive healtheducation, counselling and contraceptive availability are effective in increasing adolescent knowledgerelated to sexual health, contraceptive use and decreasing adolescent pregnancy.

Access to finance and enterprise support:social funds/microcredit operations are effective financialinstruments that can be easily inserted in community demand-driven interventions for rapid jobcreation with extended outreach. Enterprise support should not rely on credit alone but should alsoprovide a wider range of business development services.

Authors and Publishers

Author(s), editor(s), contributor(s): 

Briones, Roehlano

Corporate Author(s): 

Data provider

The United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in Those Countries Experiencing Serious Drought and/or Desertification, Particularly in Africa (UNCCD) is a Convention to combat desertification and mitigate the effects of drought through national action programs that incorporate long-term strategies supported by international cooperation and partnership arrangements.


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