Published Date: 

Bonn, June 9, 2023. North Rhine-Westphalia supports a career development project of the World University Service (WUS) in the partner country North Macedonia. First published: original text

Minister for Federal and European Affairs, International Affairs and Media of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia and Head of the State Chancellery
North Rhine-Westphalia supports a career development project of the World University Service (WUS) in the partner country North Macedonia. Selected students and university graduates are provided with advice, training and internships in order to improve their career opportunities in their home country. Young people from different disciplines can take part in coaching seminars on the topics of "application training" and "starting a business". The project runs until July 2024.
Europe Minister Nathanael Liminski: “The state government would like to make its contribution to young people from North Macedonia and Kosovo seeing prospects for the future in their own country. The Western Balkans are on the way to joining the European Union, but the process of integration is proving very lengthy. As a result, young, ambitious people who are willing to learn in particular lose the motivation to stay in their home country. By supporting the WUS career development project, we want to counteract the increasing emigration trend among young people. Last but not least, strengthening our partner region is also in our own interest. German companies that want to expand branches or supply chains in the Western Balkans benefit from these well-trained specialists on site.”
In March 2023, Minister Liminski met the participants of the first project run in North Macedonia for a personal exchange and got to know the learning and educational history of the young people. The offer from North Rhine-Westphalia met with a great response and has enormously increased the career opportunities of the graduates. Youth unemployment in North Macedonia is at least 35 percent. The academic training often does not meet the needs of the companies that are looking for skilled workers. This project will make the transition from studying to the job market easier. An important element is also the placement of internships in companies in North Macedonia. Around 50 places will be offered to applicants from the partner country North Macedonia, and for the first time a few places will also be offered to participants from neighboring Kosovo. The internships can be used to supplement the content that was neglected during the course.
North Macedonia, like the other countries in the Balkan region, suffers from a strong emigration of the highly qualified. The program is intended to help ease the pressure to migrate. The German committee of the World University Service (WUS), a long-standing partner of the North Rhine-Westphalian state government, has already successfully implemented corresponding programs in Albania, Ethiopia, Chile and Vietnam, among others. North Macedonia has been a partner country of North Rhine-Westphalia since March 1, 2021 and is supported by North Rhine-Westphalia on its way to the EU.