KARACHI: The Euro­pean Union plans to spend up to 50 million euros from January 2022 onwards for promoting vocational education and training programmes in Pakistan, Ovidiu Mic, who is leading a delegation of the European Union to the country, said on Thursday.

During a meeting with members of the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI), he said agriculture, textiles, SMEs and ICT would get more programmes as these sectors could potentially create millions of jobs.

He added that the EU was keen to help unskilled workers learn new skills and become productive employees for Pakistani businesses and beyond.

According to FPCCI’s press release, Mr Mic expressed his satisfaction over the completion of more than three years of Sectoral Support Programme (SSP) under Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) initiatives in collaboration with the FPCCI. These programmes are being implemented by the National Vocational and Technical Training Commi­ssion (NAVTCC), and GIZ (Germany). The Norwegian government is a partner as well.

Mian Nasser Hyatt Maggo, the FPCCI president, said he wanted the TVET-SSP to expand its programme to more sectors and cities of Pakistan to benefit more SMEs and women entrepreneurs across the country.

He expressed his desire to see TVET-SSP continuing beyond 2021 and reach out to 90 million smart phone users of Pakistan to maximise the gains it can offer.

Published in Dawn, September 17th, 2021

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