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Friday June 21, 2024

PSDF, BAT join hands to create 40,000 jobs for youth

By Our Correspondent
May 25, 2024
Deputy Head of Mission Martin Dawson hosted the agreement signing ceremony between the Punjab Skills Development Fund (PSDF) and the British Asian Trust (BAT) on May 24, 2024.  — Facebook/britishasiantrust
Deputy Head of Mission Martin Dawson hosted the agreement signing ceremony between the Punjab Skills Development Fund (PSDF) and the British Asian Trust (BAT) on May 24, 2024.  — Facebook/britishasiantrust

LAHORE:In a major development regarding job opportunities for youth, Punjab Skills Development Fund (PSDF) and the British Asian Trust (BAT) together with leading British Asian business leaders built Pakistan’s first Employment Impact Bond to ensure 40,000 jobs for young people in growth sector.

In this regard, Deputy Head of Mission Martin Dawson hosted the agreement signing ceremony. According to a statement issued here on Friday, human capital constraint is a critical factor for Pakistan’s slow economic growth and low global competitiveness. With over four million youth becoming working-age in Pakistan each year, equipping them with future-ready skills can serve as a powerful driver for economic advancement in the country.

The Employment Impact Bond is being designed to ensure 40,000 jobs for young people and drive a focus on long-term employment outcomes, while unlocking new capital to fund social impact in Pakistan. Impact bonds are innovative financing instruments that leverage private sector capital and expertise for development, with a focus on achieving results. They shift the focus from inputs to outcomes, performance, and results through financial incentives.

Global interest in this initiative has already led to the British Asian Trust and PSDF being awarded design funding from the Outcomes Accelerator created by the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO), Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) and UBS Optimus Foundation and managed by Levoca. The design of the impact bond will draw on successful examples from global contexts and will benefit from the British Asian Trust and PSDF’s shared expertise in innovative finance and skilling.

British Asian Trust Pakistan Director Kamyla Marvi said, “This partnership with PSDF marks a significant milestone in our efforts to drive employment for the youth of Pakistan. We are excited to bring international expertise to support the local design of the country’s first impact bond for employment. We genuinely believe that this is an opportunity to transform the approach to development finance in Pakistan leading to greater innovation, efficiency and scale.”

At the signing ceremony, PSDF COO Ali Akbar Bosan said, “This pioneering initiative reflects a revolutionary approach to funding skills training, set to transform the landscape of skilled workforce development.