Page 1

WE, the Heads of State and Government of the African Union, meeting at the Twenty
Ninth Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the Union in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 3
to 4 July 2017;
Expressing our deepest gratitude to His Excellency Mr. Abdelaziz Bouteflika, President
of the Peoples’ Democratic Republic of Algeria, for hosting this event on the basis of his
faith in African cooperation, his commitment and that of the Algerian Government since
independence in favour of the continent’s prosperity, and his conviction that "Algeria’s
stability is Africa’s stability and its prosperity is that of Africa";
Recalling the Assembly Decision Assembly/AU/Dec.601(XXVI) taken in January 2016
where in the Assembly devoted the theme of the year 2017 to “Harnessing the
Demographic Dividend through investments in Youth”;
Aware that the demographic dividend is not automatic and that the benefit can arise
when a country has a relatively large proportion of working-age population, and
effectively invests in their health, empowerment, education, social protection and
employment through public action and private sector involvement;
Noting that about 46 percent of the 1.3 billion increase in Africa’s labour force over the
period 2015-2063 will be young people aged 15 to 34, averaging 12.1 million a year;
Alarmed that the youth account for more than 60% of all unemployed people in Africa;
and Mindful of the need to address this high youth unemployment rates and the
mismatch between the demands of labour market and educational qualifications in
Convinced that the investments made today in the youth, who represent Africa’s
greatest asset, will determine the development trajectory of Africa over the next 50
years and position the continent towards realizing the “Africa We Want,” a strong, united
and influential global player and partner as envisioned in Agenda 2063;
Noting with appreciation the adoption the Protocol to the African Charter on Human
and Peoples’ Rights on the Rights of Older Persons in Africa by the Heads of State and
Government in January 2016 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia;
Also Noting of the biennial report on the progress of the AU Campaign to End Child
Marriage in Africa and the achievements made at the national level in ending child
marriage within the framework of the campaign;
Further noting the ongoing efforts of the AUC, ECA, AfDB and ILO in the preparation
and design of the Employment and Social Cohesion Fund;

Select target paragraph3