Tanzanian authorities said on Monday they have trained over 12,000 young university graduates on smart agriculture in a move aimed at reducing the unemployment crisis.

Patrobas Katambi, the Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office responsible for Labor, Youth, Employment and Persons with Disability, told parliament in the capital Dodoma that smart agriculture can absorb the rising number of unemployed young graduates in the country.

Katambi told the House that apart from training on smart agriculture, a good number of young graduates have also benefited with training on essential professional skills which would help them compete well in the labor market.

The deputy minister made the remarks in response to a question by Thea Ntara, a Special Seats Member of Parliament, who had asked the government to explain what it was doing to resolve unemployment facing the country’s young graduates.

The lawmaker had observed that thousands of university graduates were on the streets, jobless while the country has plenty of land for agriculture but the major challenge is that they do not have essential skills to venture into the sector.

Katambi said the government was determined to help the youth to secure employment through several programs,including the National Youth Skills Development Program which has been providing training on smart farming using green houses, irrigation and other technologies so as to improve their income.

According to official statistics, about 800,000 Tanzanian young men and women are estimated to enter into the labor market each year.