7-8 JUNE 2017 / Tour & Taxis / Brussels

Young People

By 2030, the number of people aged 15-24 in the world is projected to grow by 7 %, to nearly 1.3 billion. Many will be concentrated in developing countries, especially in Africa and South Asia. Creating opportunities for youth to be trained, participate in their societies, benefiting from wealth and decent job creation is not just a means to ensure their full contribution as active citizens to inclusive societies and sustainable development. It is also a way to address the root causes of instability, irregular migration and forced displacement. Young people deserve full access to education, healthcare, employment and financial services. Their voices in public life should be heard. We must make sure young people are part of the solution, as builders of better lives for their and future generations, and not the victims of circumstance and injustice.

Young people are particularly vulnerable in situations of fragility, violent conflict, organised crime, migration, exploitation and trafficking. Targeted policies and appropriate investment are required to promote and protect young people's rights and facilitate their full participation in society, the economy and in democratic processes. They also need to be encouraged to be part of decision-making processes and to assume leadership roles in their communities and countries. Young people have a particular role to play as peace builders in post-conflict contexts and as agents of change for inter-community coexistence, especially when they are exposed to violent extremism.

Sub-Saharan Africa faces the tremendous challenge of needing to create about 18 million jobs every year to absorb new labour market entrants. Though smallholder farmers remain of central importance for youth livelihoods, particularly in rural areas, the EU and its Member States will strengthen their focus on increasing the prospects for entrepreneurship, supported by quality basic education, effective vocational training, enhanced access to digital technologies and other services. This will help to secure a demographic youth dividend and greater productivity. It will also offer opportunities for young people to enjoy their rights, achieve their full potential and to participate in safer societies, benefit from technological progress, and achieve their aspirations of prosperity and mobility.

Investing in young people yields long-standing returns for national and global development.

Related sessions

Young People
auditorium A3
7 June
14:00 to 15:30
Young People
debate D3
8 June
09:00 to 10:15
Young People
debate D7
8 June
10:45 to 12:00
Young People
debate D3
8 June
13:30 to 14:45
Young People
debate D2
8 June
15:15 to 16:30
Young People
debate S2
7 June
09:30 to 10:45
Young People
project S4
8 June
10:45 to 12:00
Young People
web seminar S4
7 June
16:15 to 17:30
Young People
brainstorming B2
7 June
16:15 to 17:30
Young People
brainstorming B2
8 June
15:15 to 16:30
Young People
stand
Young People
creative youth activities Youth Lounge
7 June
18:00 to 18:30
Young People
creative youth activities Youth Lounge
7 June
19:00 to 19:30
Young People
creative youth activities Youth Lounge
8 June
09:00 to 09:30
Young People
creative youth activities Youth Lounge
8 June
10:00 to 10:30
Young People
exhibition