Jun 042008

ISLAMABAD: Speakers at a conference on ‘Building Leadership Capacity of Youth through Civic Involvement’ agreed on Tuesday that bureaucracy, mismanagement and lack of co-ordination between academic institutions and the industry had hampered the youth from becoming a productive part of society.

Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) in collaboration with the Centre for International Private Enterprise (CIPE) and Ministry for Youth Affairs arranged the event.

The speakers said unnecessary hurdles and indifference of the government towards the initiatives taken by youngsters had turned the lights out on their hopes and demoted them to mere jobseekers.

Ashfaq Mahmood, the youth affairs secretary, Moin Fudda of the CIPE and Muhammad Ejaz Abbassi, the ICCI president, were the key speakers.

The over 60 participants of the conference were divided into five groups to hold discussions, which led to recommendations for extended interaction between academic institutions and the industry and development of skills among the youth to become job creators.

The participants demanded the government set up centres to guide the youth for future planning. They said fresh graduates remained unable to practise their innovative ideas because no one was ready to encourage them.

They said courses should be designed according to market demand as there was a sea of difference between what students were taught and what they were asked to do in professional life.

They said aspiring entrepreneurs should learn business skills like writing down a plan or preparing budget.

They said successful business people should guide newcomers on how to save and utilise the capital properly.

They acknowledged that young people were considered high-risk borrowers and were thus denied loans by financial institutions. They said the youth needed low interest loans as only micro financing would not serve the purpose fully.

Youth Affairs Secretary Ashfaq Mehmood said the government was very keen to alleviate poverty and encourage the young to take initiatives. He said the government had launched many programmes like Rozgar Scheme, Micro Finance Scheme and aid through Baitul Mall for the youth.

He said, “It is painful when a young mind is not guided properly.” He said the government would start training workshops to help the young excel in their respective fields.

He said the youth award would be announced this year and potential writers had been asked to take part in essay writing contests.

He said, “National Youth Council, headed by the prime minister, and National Youth Committee would be constituted to look into matters related to young people.” Moin Fudda the youth should take part in research projects, especially in the field of agriculture.

Source: Daily Times, 4/6/2008

 Posted by at 9:05 am

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