Pilot Project: Advanced Training for 80 Tradespeople in Kabul and Mazar-e Sharif

Sunday marked the last of a two-day conference in Kabul on the further training of tradespeople and company owners. Ninety-five people attended the event, including officials from the Technical Vocational Education and Training Authority (TVETA), the Federation of Afghanistan’s Craftsmen and Trade (FACT), guilds, the municipalities of Kabul and Mazar-e Sharif as well as vocational teachers. The participants agreed to launch a pilot phase for the further training of two trades, metalwork and car mechanics, benefitting about 80 people in Kabul and Mazar-e Sharif. The Afghan-German Cooperation will develop and provide the required learning materials.

In his speech, Head of FACT, Mr Mohammad Hassan Sepahi emphasised, ‘Technology in the market is expanding day by day. It has become more digitised, often leaving our tradespeople behind. This training helps them boost their knowledge and reach in a competitive market, while increasing employment at the same time.’

In 2016 and 2017, the Afghan-German Cooperation conducted a study on six main trades – metalwork, car mechanics, mechanical engineering, electrical work, carpentry, and tailoring. The findings indicated that about 80% of interviewees were interested in undertaking further training in their trade. This is consistent with the results of another study, which found that about 60% of all economically active people in Afghanistan have skills gaps in their profession. The further training programme is designed to tackle these shortcomings of the labour force.

Beneficiaries in Kabul will receive training at the Kabul Mechanical Institute, and tradespeople in Mazar-e Sharif at the city’s Gas and Oil Institute. Each course will last for three months and include the following subjects; technical drawing, applied mathematics, technology, material engineering, bookkeeping and accounting. Training will take place either early in the morning or in the afternoon so that participants can go about their work as usual. If the pilot phase proves successful, further training for tradesperson and company owners will be rolled out to other provinces and include additional professions.

Completing the training will earn the participants an official certificate of completion, certified by TVETA and the respective municipality. The holders of such a document enjoy a number of advantages, such as faster processing of applications for business licences as well as tax exemptions.

The programme Supporting Technical and Vocational Education and Training in Afghanistan (TVET) is implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and KfW Development Bank on behalf of the German Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). TVET aims at expanding and improving the formal vocational education and training system in Afghanistan to increase young Afghan’s employability. In addition, the programme is modernising the traditional apprenticeship system Ostad- Shagerdi in cooperation with the Afghan Technical and Vocational Education and Training Authority. After attending a formal TVET school besides Ostad- Shagerdi for three years, apprentices can apply for 12th-grade degrees, allowing many young people to attend advanced schooling.