01.08.2018

Job prospects in Northern Iraq for refugees and in host communities

Welders, plumbers, computer programmers – around 8,000 refugees, internally displaced persons and locals will have better labour market opportunities by the end of 2018.

On behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH has been supporting the Kurdish regional government in caring for the refugees and internally displaced persons in Northern Iraq since 2014. Since the Syrian crisis broke out in 2011 and the advance of the so-called Islamic State, around one million internally displaced persons and some 250,000 Syrian refugees have sought refuge in the autonomous region of Kurdistan in Northern Iraq. This is an enormous challenge for the region, which was previously home to six million people: The Kurdish regional government is pushed to its limits in trying to provide for the immense number of people.

A priority area for GIZ and its partners is the job prospects of young refugees – including Syrians, Yazidis, and IDPs from Mosul – as well as of the locals in the host communities. Having an income immediately improves their lives in the region. This includes continuing education in the host communities, such as training and workshops that teach participants technical and handicraft skills at facilities including the Jiner vocational training centre in the autonomous region of Kurdistan. The centre offers training courses which labour market analyses have shown to be in demand and therefore have the best prospects of offering employment: The courses offered range from welding, plumbing and electrical engineering to the services sector and coding in the IT sector.

As a result, it is expected that over 7,900 people will have completed training in in-demand professional fields by the end of 2018. Around a third of these people are women.