Press Release

Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs and UNDP partner to boost employment opportunities in Iraq

12 April 2022

Baghdad, 11 April 2022 – A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed between the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (MoLSA) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) today. The partnership will focus on promoting sustainable economic growth and boosting employment opportunities in Iraq.

The MoU brings MoLSA and UNDP together to work on several initiatives, including supporting small enterprises and creating an enabling start-up ecosystem in Iraq. The collaboration will cut across policy, institutional, and individual levels to support innovative small businesses and start-ups needed for employment generation in Iraq today.

“At UNDP, we prioritize support to Iraq to diversify the economy, boost sustainable livelihoods and create jobs. We will together focus on bolstering our efforts to support small enterprises and creating more employment opportunities for Iraqis, especially vulnerable groups, as we help rebuild Iraq after years of conflict,” says Ms Zena Ali Ahmad, Resident Representative of UNDP Iraq.

“The partnership comes at the right moment as it builds on the ongoing technical and training support UNDP has provided to MOLSA since December 2021. We are working closely with MoLSA to improve monitoring of small enterprises that have received loans and incubation services from the Ministry,” Ms Zena adds.

Through this agreement, MoLSA will also play an active role in implementing UNDP-implemented projects aiming at strengthening livelihoods.

"Micro and small businesses are the backbone of any economy, especially in a country like Iraq where they have the potential to create sustainable job opportunities. Through this partnership with UNDP, we aim to create an enabling and nurturing environment for micro and small business in Iraq to succeed," Judge Salar Abdul Sattar Mohammed, Minister of Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.

“The support UNDP is providing to MoLSA, especially with regards to micro and small projects and business incubators is in line with the global standard and draws from valuable international experience. Through the partnership, we also receive UNDP’s technical support with running programmes, creating job opportunities, and improving the start-up ecosystem in Iraq,” Mr Raid Jabbar Bahad, Director General of the Department of Labor and Vocational Training at the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.

Mrinalini Santhanam

Communications Specialist

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