Ethiopia’s youthful population is a huge advantage and has untapped potential for positive economic development.

Ethiopia’s population is estimated to be 115 million, with 41% of the population below the age of 15. More than a quarter of the population is between the ages of 15 and 29. Unemployment among young people is projected to be around 27%. Low literacy is one factor contributing to the high youth unemployment rate (68 percent). The secondary school gross enrollment rate in Ethiopia is 39.8%, which is far too low for a country with Ethiopia’s natural resources, economic potential, and global ambitions.

With youth between ages 15-29 accounting for 33.8% of the urban population and another 32.8% of the population below the age of 15, Ethiopia is poised for a significant youth bulge.

Ethiopia’s population is currently about 115 million people, and it is expected to reach 200 million by the end of 2049. Ethiopia’s population is expanding at a rate of roughly 2.7 percent per year, with no peak year or period of decline anticipated. Ethiopia has a birth rate of 36 per 1,000 people. The fertility rate in the country is 4.1 births per woman.

The amount to which Ethiopia can realize its demographic dividend and the related economic growth which all Ethiopians seek will be determined by the knowledge, skills, and capabilities of its future working-age population as Ethiopia’s population age structure changes. When properly educated and trained, these individuals will form the backbone of Ethiopia’s industrialization and development toward middle-income status.

Source: USAID

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