Young Women in Africa: Agents of Economic Growth and Transformation by 2030

This report highlights key constraints that need to be addressed to enable young women to significantly increase their productivity and contribution to Africa’s economic growth by 2030.

The report Young Women in Africa: Agents of Economic Growth and Transformation by 2030 published by the Mastercard Foundation in June 2024 provides insights into young women’s growth and potential contribution to Africa’s economy. It assesses the economic impact of young women on Africa’s GDP and identifies sectors that present opportunities for work and entrepreneurship for them.

Young women in Africa can become important contributors to the continent’s economy, adding USD 287 billion (a 5 per cent GDP increase) and 23 million jobs, according to report. The authors provide recommendations what measures can be taken by governments, the private sector, civil society and the young women themselves.

In order to create access for women to the labour market, it is important to ensure that they receive sufficient school education. Only 26 per cent of girls complete secondary school, and just about 8 per cent are enrolled in tertiary education, which significantly impacts their access to higher-paid work and, thus, their overall contribution to GDP, the authors write. Failure to educate girls could result in a USD 10 billion loss in GDP across the continent. 

Besides this, it is necessary to free up women’s time by addressing the burden of care, accelerating their access to financial services, enhancing young women’s skill in sectors that raise their income and growth as well as their digital skills to increase their competitiveness and implement inclusive policies that address young women’s realities.

(Mastercard Foundation/ile)

Read more and download the report on the Mastercard Foundation website

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