Citi Steps Up Its Commitment to Youth Employment, Skills Development and Innovation across Asia Pacific

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  • As part of the expanded global Pathways to
    initiative, Citi and the Citi Foundation to collectively invest US$35
    million in philanthropic contributions and grants to improve the employability
    of youth from low-income and underserved communities in Asia by 2023
  • Citi Asia Pacific to offer 6,000 jobs and 60,000
    job-skills training opportunities for youth over the next three years 
  • Young people to continue to be positioned front and center in tackling
    most pressing challenges in Asia and accelerating progress towards the United Nations’
    Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

HONG KONG, CHINA – Media OutReach – 18 September 2020 – Citigroup Inc. (NYSE: C) – Citi Asia Pacific and the Citi
Foundation today announced a collective commitment of US$35 million in philanthropic investments
to advance economic opportunities and employability for youth from low-income
and underserved communities in the region by 2023.  In addition, the bank will offer 6,000 jobs
and 60,000 job skills training opportunities for young people at Citi Asia over
the next three years. 


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The regional
commitments are part of Citi’s expanded global Pathways to Progress initiative. This initiative is designed to equip young people with the
skills and confidence to improve their employment and entrepreneurship
opportunities and make a positive impact in their lives and their communities
in rapidly
changing economies.


The increased
commitment is in response to the impact of COVID-19 on youth employment in the
region. According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), Asia Pacific
is home to more than half of the world’s youth population, with 700 million
youth aged 15 to 24 years. While they represent 20 per cent of the total
working-age population, this youth segment accounts for almost half of the Asia
Pacific’s jobless. The pandemic and resulting economic crisis has further
challenged this issue. Projections through the end of 2020 in 13 countries show
sizable jumps, with youth unemployment rates doubling the 2019 rate in some


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“Communities in Asia Pacific are facing a youth
unemployment crisis, especially among low-income and underserved groups, due to
the impact of COVID-19. The expanded Pathways to Progress initiative underlines
our effort to tackle this urgent issue by equipping and empowering young people
with skills to improve their employment outcomes. Young people are key to Asia
Pacific’s COVID-19 recovery and this investment will help them advance their
economic opportunities and support inclusive growth in the region,” said Peter
Babej, Citi’s Asia Pacific CEO.


On its employment and
training, Citi has committed to over the next three years to offer 6,000
jobs and 60,000 skills training opportunities across Citi’s retail and
institutional businesses in Asia Pacific through its summer internship program,
full-time analyst and associate roles, on-campus programs and opportunities
with Citi® University Partnerships in Innovation & Discovery
(CUPID) Program.


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The CUPID program engages diverse students on a range of innovation
projects across the company.  To provide students
the opportunity to experience banking despite the pandemic, Citi Asia Pacific
launched a first-of-its-kind Virtual Reality Intern Experience program, open
for enrolment to students around the world.


The program offers ‘lifelike’ on-the-job tasks and skills training
relevant to an analyst role across three different businesses at Citi – Banking,
Capital Markets and Advisory (BCMA), Markets and Securities Services, and
Consumer Banking.


Citi Foundation grant investments
will focus on programs that serve low-income and underserved communities who have been disproportionately
impacted by COVID-19, including young women at risk, migrant youth, minorities and youth
with disabilities.

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addition, Pathways to Progress programming on youth leadership and innovation will be strengthened, to recognize the
role youth can play in enabling progress and finding solutions for the most
pressing challenges faced by society. 


In Asia Pacific, examples of Pathways to Progress programming
funded in 2020 include: 


  • Youth
    Co:Lab, a project co-created by Citi Foundation and the United Nations
    Development Programme (UNDP), to continue bringing governments and stakeholders
    together to support young social entrepreneurs in starting and growing
    businesses that accelerate achievement of the United Nations’ Sustainable
    Development Goals in more than 25 countries and territories across the region
  • Citi’s US$10 million commitment in India to deliver
    demand-driven future skills training to 200,000 low-income youth and providing
    at least 70% of them with employment across India’s growth industries
  • Paid internships
    supported by Citi through Hong Kong Council of Social Services and Kyung Hee
    University in South Korea to provide university students the opportunity to
    gain work experiences at nonprofit organizations
  • Citi Foundation partnership
    with AIME in Australia to help Indigenous high school youth further their
    education or transition to job training and employment
  • Citi Foundation partnership
    with the Philippine Business for Education through First Future, which unlocks
    the first careers of K to 12 graduates by connecting education to concrete
    economic opportunities
  • Citi
    Foundation partnership with UCEP Bangladesh to ensure decent employment of
    underprivileged women by providing demand-driven skills training, nationally
    recognized certification and job placement support
  • Citi
    Foundation partnership with The Garden of Hope Foundation in Taiwan to help
    teenage girls who have experienced domestic violence or exploitation to explore
    future employment opportunities and professional interests
  • Citi
    Foundation partnership with UNESCO in Indonesia to build an enabling ecosystem
    and contribute to sustainable livelihoods for young entrepreneurs in creative
    industries living in and around Indonesia’s heritage sites


Since 1999, the Citi
Foundation, has been actively engaged across Asia Pacific, investing over $280
million in grant funds. In Pathways to
Progress: Insights from Six Years of Programming
, the Citi
Foundation summarizes the learnings
and insights gathered that have helped inform the programming and evolution of
this initiative.


Pathways to Progress also engages thousands of Citi employee volunteers,
who lend their time and talent to serve as mentors, coaches and role models to
many young people. 



Tackling the COVID-19 youth employment crisis in
Asia and the Pacific: ILO and ADB, 2020


the leading global bank, has approximately 200 million customer accounts and
does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions. Citi provides
consumers, corporations, governments and institutions with a broad range of
financial products and services, including consumer banking and credit,
corporate and investment banking, securities brokerage, transaction services,
and wealth management.


Additional information
may be found at | Twitter: @Citi | YouTube: | Blog: | Facebook: | LinkedIn:

Citi Foundation

Citi Foundation works to promote economic progress and improve the lives of
people in low-income communities around the world. We invest in efforts that increase
financial inclusion, catalyze job opportunities for youth, and reimagine
approaches to building economically vibrant communities. The Citi Foundation’s
“More than Philanthropy” approach deploys the enormous expertise of
Citi and its people to fulfill our mission and drive thought leadership and

Citi Steps Up Its Commitment to Youth Employment, Skills Development and Innovation across Asia Pacific

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