The Tunisian agri-food sector is facing a significant gap between the skills of the available workforce and the requirements of the private sector. Despite a high unemployment rate, particularly among rural youth and women, employers and investors are finding it difficult to recruit qualified technicians. This gap is due to a lack of information on skill needs, negative perceptions of vocational training, and inappropriate training programs.

In this context, the Tunisian government, supported by the World Bank and the Dutch government, is launching the Nexus project as part of the TRACE program (Tunisian Rural and Agricultural Chain of Employment). This project aims to reduce the disparity between supply and demand for skills in the labor market and improve the alignment between the qualifications offered by training institutions and those required by employers.

The TRACE program, more specifically, is a program that aims to promote rural private entrepreneurship, especially among young people and women under the age of 40, to help create jobs in rural areas and increase the incomes of rural producers. The areas targeted by TRACE are the Governorates of Gabes, Cairouan and Jendouba with counters in the three governorates to join the program.

TRACE is based on the hypothesis that inland regions with strong natural capital and agro-climatic conditions could create more economic opportunities in the agri-food sector by stimulating agriculture entrepreneurship in rural areas, particularly among young people, by organizing and linking farmers to markets, supporting agricultural diversification and increased productivity, and by developing the network of agro-industrial SMEs and improving their competitiveness.

Thus, TRACE program will finance more than 350 investment projects to create more than 3,000 direct and indirect jobs through a fund to support economic recovery and job creation in the rural, agricultural and agri-food sectors to support producers and young agri-entrepreneurs to become economic actors who contribute to the growth of their regions.

Specific objectives of the program include:

  1. Map current and future labor demand in the agri-food sector.
    • Estimate the number of employees currently employed in the sector.
    • Identify areas where employers are encountering recruitment difficulties.
    • Analyze employment trends in the sector over recent years (INS).
    • Forecast changes in labor needs over the coming years, considering factors such as climate change (water stress and global warming) and technological changes, public policy developments, and market dynamics.
    • Examine potential employment opportunities for youth and women in the sector.
  2. Identify the skills and qualifications required for in-demand jobs in the agri-food sector.
    • Establish a list of the most sought-after technical and other skills by employers in the agri-food sector.
    • Analyze the most relevant qualifications and certifications for different jobs in the sector.
    • Assess the match between available skills and labor market needs.
  3. Evaluate challenges and opportunities for skill development and employment in the agri-food sector.
    • Identify the main obstacles to employment and training of workers in the sector.
    • Examine factors influencing the attractiveness of the sector for youth and women, such as working conditions and career advancement prospects.
  4. Formulate recommendations to improve the match between vocational training and the needs of the agri-food labor market, particularly for youth and women.

Through this objectives, the program will help address the following market failures and constraints:

    1. Sector fragmentation led by insufficient cooperation between actors in the agri-food market;
    2. The absence of a recognized agricultural status which limits the possibilities of access to credit, leading small producers to turn away from agriculture;
    3. The absence of effective post-harvest infrastructure;
    4. The lack of connection of small rural farmers to wholesale (urban) markets involving too much intermediaries;
    5. A strong state presence with costly market interventions oriented towards food security and the guarantee of a stable supply.
NO Comment 24th February 2024

Leave a Reply

Translate »
Chat with us
Chat with us
Questions, doubts, issues? We're here to help you!
None of our operators are available at the moment. Please, try again later.
Our operators are busy. Please try again later
Have you got question? Write to us!
This chat session has ended
Was this conversation useful? Vote this chat session.
Good Bad