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ADB approves $100m for vocational training

The “Improving Workforce Readiness in Punjab Project” will contribute to raising the standard and applicability of TVET in order to improve workers’ skills, increase the employability of graduates, guarantee more equal access to training for women and underrepresented groups, and enhance management and strategic planning in TVET institutions.

According to Yevgeniy Zhukov, director general of the ADB for Central and West Asia, “Punjab makes up over half the national income and is projected to make a considerable contribution to Pakistan’s post-flood recovery.”

In order to improve livelihoods and support industries that are essential to Pakistan’s recovery and future growth, he continued, “ADB’s project will fund demand-driven and gender-focused training.”

In eight major economic sectors—automobile assembly parts and repairs, construction, food processing, health, information and communication technology, light engineering, textiles and apparel, tourism and hospitality—programme ADB’s will fund the building of 19 TVET centres of excellence. They will implement best practises and offer programmes with connections to the industry. In order to address new trends in the fourth industrial revolution, the project will also feature the creation of technology-based skill training programmes.

Given Pakistan’s significant climatic sensitivity, disaster resilience would be incorporated into the design of TVET centres of excellence while teaching the next generation how to prevent and deal with emergencies.

“Workers with skills in key areas such as construction and agriculture will be essential to implementing stronger safety standards, building back better and helping the country prepare for future natural hazards,” noted Rie Hiraoka, ADB Director for Social Sectors.

“ADB’s program also seeks to support women and will prioritise disadvantaged groups to improve their chances of finding quality jobs and boosting their incomes,” she added.

A $2 million technical support grant from the “Japan Fund for the prosperous and resilient Asia and the Pacific” (JFPR) is also included in the project. This funding will boost Punjab’s TVET institutional framework and strategy