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The United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) held a youth forum,“Creating a Sustainable Future: Empowering Youth with Better Job Opportunities” on 4 May 2012 at the United Nations Headquarters, New York City. This event was organized jointly by the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) and the Department of Public Information (DPI).

Since the onset of the global economic crisis, youth unemployment has increased across the world, affecting both developed and developing countries alike. This problem poses significant challenges not simply to the youth themselves but also to the capacity of companies and countries to innovate and develop competitive advantages which are critical for economic recovery.

This meeting was organized as part of the preparatory process for the 2012 ECOSOC Annual Ministerial Review (AMR), to be held in July on the theme of Promoting Productive Capacity, Employment and Decent Work

The programme consisted of an opening plenary, followed by two dialogue classroom sessions on “Training and education to facilitate access to job market” and “Promoting youth employment-Creating jobs for a more sustainable future”. Youth representatives from around the world participated in this event.

Recommendations coming out from the ECOSOC youth forum will be shared with Member States at the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development-Rio+20, to take place in Brazil, in June 2012, and also during the ECOSOC High-level session in July 2012.