World Bank to provide funds for Sindh Skill Development Project

KARACHI: In order to tackle the problem of insufficient skilled workforce for Pakistan’s future economic growth, the Sindh Skills Development Project has been signed to better equip 50,000 youth in Sindh Province with relevant skills to increase employability of trainees, a World Bank release said.

It said three main challenges in Pakistan are limited access to education and vocational training, the low quality of education and training, and a shortage of skilled labour for the country’s future growth.

Access to education and training is still limited. There’s a wide disparity between male-female, rural-urban, and different regions. Not even 4 percent of the total population enters into higher education and less than 1 percent of the population has ever received technical education and vocational training, WB said.

Even for students that have access to education and training, quality can be uneven. More than ¾ of the graduates have some foundational skills but no marketable skills for employment. This evidence says that the training programs are not relevant to the skills demanded. The poor training quality can be attributed to inefficient public administration of training programs, lack of interaction with industry, and outdated infrastructure of public institutions, WB said.

Skilled Workforce ranks as the 6th highest issue (out of 15) in The Pakistan Competitiveness Report 2009 among the most problematic factors for doing business in Pakistan. Graduates of training institutions are not meeting the demand.

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