President Dilma Rousseff presented a programme last Tuesday to stimulate access to the labour market for young Brazilians. This measure has two facets, according to the socialist leader. The first is to reduce youth unemployment rates and, the second is to protect young people from social conflict.

The programme will be aimed at finding jobs for teenagers aged 14 to 18 in small and medium-sized enterprises. Companies will receive tax benefits and any apprentices joining the programme must continue with their studies.

“Businesses will benefit from having young people working for them with their immense curiosity and capacity for change”, said the Brazilian president during the presentation of the programme. Rousseff stressed that young people should be made aware of the potential of small and medium-sized enterprises that can hire them “in every corner, district and province of Brazil” with the support of the State and of the government.

The first phase of the plan will be implemented in the poorer areas of the country, where there is widespread deterioration of the labour market due to the difficult economic situation and growing unemployment levels. According to official data, Brazil has a total youth unemployment rate of 13.6% among young people aged 18 to 24, that especially affects women (17.5%) while men stand at 10.7%.