Life at sea: Sailing with the Maritime Labour Convention

We had arrived in China at just about the same time as Typhoon Utor.

Which was a bit of a problem, since our cameraman Damien Riunaud and I had travelled to Shenzhen to board the Singapore-bound APL Boston container ship and produce video footage documenting life at sea.

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My story as a young entrepreneur in Zambia

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Founder and CEO of Tapera Bio Industries Limited, he received entrepreneurship training as part of the ILO’s Youth Employment Project in Zambia.

As the sun comes up over Lusaka, a city I share with 2 million others, business is well under way and has been since 3 a.m. The trucks carrying produce from the farms around the city are the first to arrive in the early hours before I wake.

As soon as I do, I am up and out, looking for new contacts and investments to help support and grow my bio-fuel company. Such is the life of a young entrepreneur in this town. Every day is a new opportunity to meet the challenges of keeping a small business alive.

I’m 28 but first started my business in 2006 when I was 21, after being inspired by a TV documentary on renewable energy in Brazil. I put the project on hold for a while to work as an aircraft technician at Zambian Airways Limited. However, they went out of business and I came back to the bio-fuel idea. My alternatives were few, as formal, decent employment opportunities are hard to come by in my country. In fact, a vast majority of young workers are in the informal economy. Continue reading

Impressions of Kathmandu: A determined youth

YP_0513By Yves Perardel, ILO Statistician for the Youth employment program

There has been a return to peace in Nepal, after over a decade of civil conflict. The ILO’s Yves Perardel travelled to Kathmandu in preparation for a survey of young people and their experience of leaving school to enter the world of work. Taking his camera to the streets, he sees a city in transition, young people here, he says, have hope for growth and stability.