Optim Project aims at reducing the gap between the supply and demand in the job market and increased incomes for self-employed or small and medium enterprises, through engagement with a range of actors and networks and stimulation of favorable frame conditions through innovative business practices.

The project has selected two sectors, namely agriculture (Agrifood) and information and communication technologies (ICT). The two selected sectors have a high significance for the Moldovan economy, for different reasons. While agriculture is one of the largest sectors in terms of share of GDP, ICT has shown rapid growth within recent years and is high on the political agenda, offering attractive employment conditions for the youth. However, despite its attractiveness and positive growth, the ICT sector still has a deficit of employees with relevant skills. Agriculture, on the other hand, is the sector where the largest share of the population is employed with the lowest income across all sectors.

ICT offers the highest-paid in the country jobs, but the employers struggle to find competent workers. In the ICT sector, the project will contribute to the expansion of the training offered to the regions, supporting rural youth participation in this highly paid sector. At the same time, the project will work with the existing structures and improve their capacities to deliver market-driven educational offerings in regions.

AgriFood -Moldova’s biggest sector and employer but offers low, often seasonal, wages. In AgriFood the project will focus on the development of services and products that would allow agribusinesses to generate higher income and stimulate the innovation at company level through several services. The project will partner with associations and develop services that would allow farmers to cope with existing challenges.

Optim project aims at contributing towards the creation of inclusive economic opportunities, with a focus on gender equity excluded groups: rural youth, returning migrants, and ethnic minorities.