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MSME Day 2018: ‘The Youth Dimension’

  • MSME Day 2018: ‘The Youth Dimension

    Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) Day is celebrated each year on 27 June. MSME Day 2018 will be dedicated to youth and will cover topics such as youth entrepreneurship and youth employment. Please join the International Trade Centre (ITC) and its partners in marking this occasion.


    MSME Day highlights the strong contribution of businesses worldwide to livelihoods, communities and economies, and the need to support MSMEs towards their success.


    • Advocate the importance of MSMEs in youth employment.
    • Raise awareness around the skills needed by youth to acquire decent jobs. 
    • Raise awareness around youth entrepreneurship.


    The campaign slogan is ‘MSME Day 2018: The Youth Dimension’.

    Key facts

    • MSMEs are major job providers and catalysts for growth.
    • MSMEs are a critical force in realizing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
    • MSMEs promote innovation, creativity and decent work for all.
    • The private sector drives jobs growth, accounting for 87% of total employment in 2016.
    • Four in five new formal jobs created in emerging markets are among MSMEs.

    Key messages

    • Young entrepreneurs are more active in high-growth sectors, are more likely to hire other young employees and pay higher wages than ‘older’ firms.
    • Youth-led enterprises can trigger youth-led job creation: start-ups account for up to 50% of new jobs.
    • Young people show higher levels of entrepreneurial initiative than adults do.

    The ‘ask’

    • A growing and young workforce needs to be equipped with the skills required for jobs of the future. 
    • An enabling business environment is necessary for job creation. Entrepreneurship must be backed by policies that provide the right environment, enhance technical and non-technical entrepreneurial skills and improve access to networks and financial services.

    The youth employment challenge

    • Globally, over 66 million youth are unemployed and 145 million young workers live in poverty. 
    • Youth unemployment is at least three times higher than that of adults. 
    • A mismatch in skills and labour market requirements means that many young people face difficulties in securing a job.

    Who takes part

    ITC and the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) are joining with other partners to observe MSME Day:

    • UN Member States
    • UN system organizations
    • MSMEs
    • Business associations
    • International and regional organizations
    • Non-governmental organizations (NGOs)
    • Academia
    • Individuals

    How to mark MSME Day

    • Research presentations
    • Policy discussions
    • Practitioner workshops
    • Business owner testimonials
    • Communication activities


    ITC will host events at its headquarters in Geneva and at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

    ITC Partnerships

    • ITC collaborates with Accelerate2030 to promote social entrepreneurship, a joint United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Impact Hub programme and that promotes positive social and environmental change contributing to the SDGs.
    • ITC is a core member of the Global Initiative on Decent Jobs for Youth, a United Nations system-wide effort that scales up action and impact on youth employment in support of the 2030 Agenda. ITC specifically focuses on the implementation of youth entrepreneurship and self-employment. 

    MSMEs and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

    In line with the theme of MSME Day, ‘The Youth Dimension’, MSMEs directly or indirectly contribute to achieving the SDGs that ITC supports.

    Further resources

    Campaign materials



  • Join the #MSMEday18 campaign!

    Join the #MSMEday18 campaign!