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Mechanics school on the way

A man walks past a Hyundai dealership showroom in Phnom Penh
A man walks past a Hyundai dealership showroom in Phnom Penh yesterday. Hyundai will be one of the sponsors for a new auto-mechanics training school in Phnom Penh. Pha Lina

Mechanics school on the way

A new auto-mechanics training school at the National Polytechnic Institute of Cambodia (NPI) that aims to train select Cambodian youth and support a shortage in the labour market officially commenced construction yesterday.

In partnership with the Ministry of Labour, joint sponsors the Korean International Cooperation Agency and Hyundai Motor announced the $670,000 public-private intiative during a groundbreaking ceremony at the government’s training institution in Por Sen Chey district .

Pich Sophoan, secretary of state at the Ministry of Labor and Vocational Training, said the new training centre will help to increase the job supply to meet industry demand in Cambodia.

“Cambodia needs to match its worker training programs with its real labour market needs. And thus setting up this centre, which will work closely with the private sector, is a good move,” Sophoan said at yesterday’s ceremony.

Hyundai will enlist teachers from South Korea to help support the centre, which is expected to be completed by October, the car-maker said.

Bun Phearin, president of NPI, said the project will give more opportunities, especially to those who have not finished high school, a chance to study in vocational training.

“After graduating from this training center, they are going to be professional workers for car garages, car assembly factories or professional self employment,” he said.

After graduation, students will receive on-the-job experience during a three-month internship at one of Hyundai’s Cambodian service centres, according to a company statement. Students will be given the opportunities to stay on and work at the service centres or at Hyundai’s assembly plant in Koh Kong.

After construction is complete, some 140 students are expected to complete the program within its first six months according to the company’s statement.

It is a win-win for the private sector and the government, said Mar Sophea, senior social sector officer at the Asia Development Bank,.

“The employers at the end of the day will have a skilled workforce, at the level they expect and at the same time for the public training institution – in terms of the quality and in terms of the relevance of what industry needs – can be filled,” he said.

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