The Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training requested that the World Bank further support Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) to develop the skills young people will need to meet the current demands of the labour market.

The request came as labour minister Ith Samheng met virtually with World Bank representative Yasser El-Gammal, manager of social protection and jobs for the East Asia and Pacific Region, on February 14.

The meeting aimed to discuss some of the ways that the World Bank can support the development of skills and mobility of labour in Cambodia. The aim of these strategies is to meet the needs of employers so that young people attain quality jobs ¬– which will increase their incomes and the productivity of Cambodia.

Samheng said at the meeting that the World Bank has sent experts to provide training and human resources to the Kingdom and had helped develop the country’s major infrastructure. These actions had assisted the government as it accelerated the socio-economic development of Cambodia.

He also requested that the World Bank further support activities such as improving TVET to meet the needs of the labour market, expanding enrolment, increasing private sector participation and improving governance.

“I requested [the World Bank] to add some key sectors that support the implementation of TVET policies and plans for its development. Foreign languages, digital skills, IT and soft skills are important and should be included in the curriculum at all levels of training,” he said.

El-Gammal expressed his optimism for continued rapid development in all sectors under the government’s leadership. He was also pleased to note increased cooperation between private and state institutions, especially the ministry’s efforts in the capacity building and skill development of young people.

El-Gammal supported the request, saying the World Bank was committed to working with the ministry to set up this project by year’s end.

The ministry also signed agreements with experts from the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the French Development Agency (AFD) on development projects in education, technical and vocational training, and the Skills for Competitiveness Project (S4C). These projects aim to improve the quality of TVET and to meet the needs of the labour market.

As part of the S4C project, TVET Cambodia has been focusing on three major priority areas, including strengthening the quality and responsiveness of technical and vocational education, master’s degrees, associate degrees, technical and specialised degrees and in training in the workplace through partnerships with industry.