Entrepreneurship Development at Koya University

Young people living in the areas beyond the governorate centers in Kurdistan Region-Iraq are more susceptible to unemployment and under-employment problems. This is attributed to the fact that investors in the region are increasingly inclined to concentrate most of their activities in those centers due to many factors that make the centers more feasible in economic terms. Owing to its relative proximity from Erbil City (Center of Erbil Governorate) and the willingness of most talented youth to migrate to Erbil for a better reward in life, the residing youth (especially women) in Koya District are among those that suffers from unemployment and under-employment since decades.

As an institution which being established to help the people living in Koya District, it is up to Koya University to invest its resources in finding some forms of sustainable solutions to the problem of unemployment and under-employment. One of the most viable solution is to encourage the resuscitation of private sector in the area through getting involved with NGOs, United Nations Organizations and other institutions to draw a roadmap of solutions jointly. United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) is one of the UN organizations that has been engaged in helping people living in similar situation in many developing countries.

On the other hand, the generous aids provided by the Japanese Government to Iraqi people since 2003 had already shown substantial positive effects on many sectors in Iraq. Ports, bridges, roads, oil facilities, gas power plants, ..,etc. were included in Japanese ODA loans, (27 loan projects, up to $6.4 billion) until September 2017. Moreover, the agreement between the Government of Japan and the Government of Iraq upon the debt reduction totaling approximately $6.7 billion should be mentioned here. Funding Project No. 170173 to enhance the employability of youth, local, refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) – by introducing entrepreneurship training and business support is an example of that generosity from the Government of Japan, and now entered the second stage of implementation after training the trainers.

On 27. November, 2018 Ms. Akemi Ishikawa (Industrial Development Expert at UNIDO), Mrs. Jovita "Peewee" Culaton Viray (UNIDO's Chief Technical Adviser in Erbil) and Dr. Mahmood Khoshnaw (UNIDO's Projects' Coordinator) visited Koya University Campus to meet with the Rector of Koya University (Prof. Dr. Wali Hamad) and observed the ongoing selection of the potential 60 trainees in the Entrepreneurship Development Program. A total of 194 young people have applied to attend the program. On Sunday 02. December, 2018 the potential trainees should join a 40-days training course spanned over 8 weeks inside the university campus.


Ms. Akemi Ishikawa (left) is being appreciated by Prof. Dr. Wali Hamad (right)

Ms. Jovita "Peewee" Culaton Viray (left) is being appreciated by Prof. Dr. Wali Hamad (right)

Part of the EDP interviewing activities at Koya University