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G20 Joint Education and Labour and Employment Ministers' Declaration

Catania, Italy, June 22, 2021


  1. We, the Ministers responsible for Education, Labour and Employment of the G20 and invited countries, met in Catania, Italy, in hybrid format, on June 22, 2021, to discuss and address the issues related to education to work transitions.

  2. Recalling the outcomes of previous G20 presidencies, in particular the G20 Joint Education and Labour and Employment Ministers' Declaration (Mendoza, 2018), we recognise that people have the right to fully develop, express and use their skills and capacities for promoting personal, community and societal wellbeing. This applies both within education and in the world of work. Moreover, we highlight the strong interconnectedness between building human capabilities and talents and fostering inclusive, sustainable and resilient social and economic systems.

  3. We re-affirm the importance of coordinating education, employment and social policies, involving all relevant stakeholders. This is a key condition to support smooth and successful transitions from education to work for young people and to foster upskilling and reskilling, building on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the G20 Joint Education and Labour and Employment Ministers' Declaration (Mendoza, 2018).

  4. We welcome the progress achieved by the G20 countries in the implementation of our previous commitments on skills development. With reference to the Antalya Goal and building on the G20 Youth Roadmap 2025 endorsed by G20 Leaders at the Riyadh Summit in 2020, we commit to addressing the disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the educational continuity and employment prospects of young people, especially those who are most at risk of permanently being left behind in the education system and in the labour market. Facilitating the steady and successful entry, retention and progression of young people into the labour market during this time of crisis is crucial for the recovery and for enhancing the resilience of our societies and economies.

Transitions from education to work

  1. We consider it crucial to further promote the acquisition of knowledge, skills and attitudes through lifelong learning that facilitate the transition of young people from education to quality, fulfilling employment, as part of an overall strategy to modernize education and labour market systems and foster initiatives that help match the supply and demand of competencies.

  2. We acknowledge the importance of promoting acquisition by young people of all forms of basic skills, including digital and green skills, technical and professional and transversal skills. This should also include the development of competencies in relation to global citizenship and sustainable development that allow us to respond to the complexity of our societies.

  3. We recognize the necessity of continuing to promote opportunities for technical and vocational education and training, including dual training, classroom-based teaching, entrepreneurship training, career guidance, apprenticeships and other work-based learning that can provide individuals with the work experience and skills needed to facilitate a path into decent work, especially in fields such as digital and green sectors. These initiatives should support diversity and inclusion, be gender-sensitive and specifically address the needs of vulnerable young people, those at risk of dropping out of education and training, and those Not in Employment, Education or Training (NEETs), as well as temporary or part-time workers, low-wage self-employed workers, migrants and informal workers.

  4. We recognise and commit to bridging the age and gender gaps that still exist today, with regards to early and lifelong education and training as well as employment and career prospects, particularly in STEM and Information and Communication technologies sectors, as well as in care and health professions. We also commit to improving career opportunities for vulnerable groups or those at risk of discrimination.

  5. We promote young people's access to quality employment opportunities and decent work. As such, we continue to develop and implement education, training and labour market policies, including inclusive guidance, entrepreneurship training and job search programmes that reach young people during and after education and training.

  6. We recognise the importance of an enhanced coordination between the relevant authorities in charge of education, employment, and social services throughout all stages of education, including by strengthening counselling, mentoring, and career guidance activities, especially for the most vulnerable. We aim to enhance the transparency of labour market opportunities, in order to increase the awareness of young people on the career prospects of their education and training choices.

  7. We commit to further promote the cooperation among education and training institutions, employment service providers, trade unions, employers' organizations, enterprises including MSMEs, and other relevant stakeholders to design responsive policies and programmes that could develop relevant skills for future jobs, based on enhanced data, tools and techniques, including, where relevant, behavioural insights, that can help anticipate local and national skills needs.

  8. We continue to promote the G20 Initiative to Promote Quality Apprenticeships (Beijing, 2016), including by further strengthening national and local partnerships between vocational education and training institutions, employers, trade unions, start-ups, local authorities and other relevant actors. We will encourage and support employers in providing opportunities for work-based learning, including dual training systems and practices, and apprenticeships, especially in small and medium- sized enterprises.

Way forward

  1. We commit to fostering lifelong learning, and enabling young people to be equipped with knowledge, skills and competencies, which allow them to thrive and meet the needs of a sustainable, human- centred and inclusive post-COVID recovery.

  2. We will work towards implementing a whole-of-government and multi-stakeholder approach and strengthening the relationship between the Education Working Group and the Employment Working Group, promoting a stronger dialogue among G20 work streams.

  3. We recognize the importance of designing short and long-term policies and programmes informed by enhanced data and policy evaluation, and commit to ensure that our countries' recovery promotes inclusion, equal opportunities and quality in education and lifelong learning as well as access to decent work.

  4. We acknowledge the contribution of multilateral organisations for supporting the international efforts in mitigating the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on youth. We thank the ILO, OECD, UNESCO, UNICEF, and the World Bank for sharing their expertise, and will continue our fruitful cooperation with them. We are also grateful for the valuable input of social partners and engagement groups in our work.

  5. We extend our gratitude and appreciation to the Italian Presidency for its leadership in 2021 and commit to continuing our work to reinforce the cooperation between the education, training and employment sectors in the coming years. We will submit this Declaration to the G20 Leaders' 2021 Summit.

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Source: Official website of the Italian G20 Presidency

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