|Gordon Brown to warn against global youth unemployment
Former prime minister will call for Barack Obama to take the
lead in helping the 81 million people under the age of 25
| January 18, 2011
Gordon Brown will warn on Thursday that the world faces youth unemployment of "epidemic proportions", as he urges joint action by the G20 group of developed and developing nations to tackle rising joblessness.
During a speech in London, the former prime minister will call for Barack Obama to take the lead in boosting education, training and job opportunities for the 81 million people under the age of 25 who are currently without work.
"Unemployment is an international timebomb for both developed and developing worlds," Brown will say in the Ted Kennedy/John Harvard memorial lecture.
With some labour market analysts predicting that under-25 joblessness in the UK will edge closer to the 1 million level in today's figures, the former prime minister will say: "The world faces global youth unemployment of epidemic proportions."
Brown will add: "It becomes an even bigger problem if, as I suspect, the numbers of young people denied education – which had been falling until last year – start to rise and go above 70 million in the years to 2015."
Brown will also say that the G20 will have to make action on youth unemployment a major issue when it meets in the summer.
"The world needs to ensure that young people are not the biggest victims of the global crisis and to ensure that they are not much worse off than their parents," he will add.
"The G20 can take a lead. I am pro-American and the leadership President Obama wants to give the world in fighting youth unemployment is of vital importance."