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When it comes to the promise of growth in Africa, progress has become less a question of what can be achieved and more of a question of what can’t we achieve? Our potential as a continent is a living, growing force that is difficult to ignore. What we cannot afford to ignore though is the work that needs to be done to turn potential into success. We must start driving practical solutions to some of the more pressing challenges that have already had a hold on Africa for too long. And unemployment needs to be first on the list. Looking at a sample of unemployment statistics from across Africa, it’s clear we have a long way to go.

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The power of entrepreneurship

But the good news is that Africa is alive with entrepreneurial potential. The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) provides a positive look at the total early-stage entrepreneurial activity (TEA) rate in a number of African countries. The TEA rate essentially measures the percentage of the population who are either nascent entrepreneurs or owner-managers of a new business. In Uganda this sits at 35.5 per cent and in Ghana at 25.8 per cent.

There’s little doubt that through the support of entrepreneurs we can have a positive effect on unemployment and working poverty rates. The EY Global Job Creation and Youth Entrepreneurship Survey 2015 revealed that 47 per cent of entrepreneurs have plans to increase the size of their workforce. This compared to just 29 per cent of larger corporations. But despite this, the job creation expectation rate for many countries in Africa still remains quite low – in Ghana it is currently at 8.5 per cent and in Uganda at 6.2 per cent, according to GEM.

Source: Real Entrepreneur


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