Turkey: G-20 youth delegates call for action to decrease youth unemployment, inequality
ISTANBUL - Anadolu Agency
REUTERS photoYoung people from across G-20 member countries meeting in Turkey have warned their leaders about the growing issues of youth unemployment and inequality.
Youth20 “gives the youth the opportunity to contribute and to actually be part of deciding on policies to change the world,” said one delegate attending the Y-20 Turkey Summit in Istanbul.
“The whole idea is to provide the G-20 leaders with a perspective from the stakeholders, who in this case are youths,” said 24-year-old Karina Blanco Ochoa from Mexico.
She was only one among a diverse group of keen young leaders from across G-20 countries participating in the Y-20 Turkey Summit, being held in Istanbul between Aug. 16 and 21.
Each country is represented by four or five people, amounting to a total of around 100 delegates at the summit.
“It is a unique opportunity for young people to talk in a global summit, because in other global summits like the U.N. you do not have any youths talking about what our concerns are and what we can do to make things better,” said Laure Amme Parpaleix, 24, from France.
She thinks that unemployment is a major issue in lots of countries, including France.
The issue was also addressed by Turkey’s G-20 Sherpa Ambassador Ayse Sinirlioğlu.
“Unemployment and inequality have been rising across the world. If we cannot include the young population into the labor force, into the social and political dimensions of our society, then we cannot be inclusive,” Sinirlioğlu said, describing increasing youth unemployment as “unsustainable.”
“If we cannot find a solution to this, then we will lose our future generations for a long period of time. This will be a loss for our economies, for our social and political systems,” she added.
The summit also pointed out that the group of young people most at risk in the labor market are low-skilled workers, those neither in employment nor in education and training, and those working in the informal economy.
Sinirlioğlu said 150 million young people across G-20 countries are in that group, in addition to more than 100 million young people who are working in informal jobs.
“Reducing the share of young people in these groups is a responsibility of all of us,” she said.
Turkey, which took over the G-20 presidency on Dec. 1, 2014, will host the tenth annual meeting of the G-20 heads of government on Nov. 15-16 in the Mediterranean city of Antalya.