Quality and equity-based TVET needed to combat unemployment in Nepal: Experts

Dec 8, 2017

In a panel interview recently broadcasted on Sagarmatha Television's Rupantaran program Technical and Vocational Education and Training experts have called for an integrated nationwide policy to counter the problem of unemployment and underemployment in the country

Lack of well-researched data and studies on how many people have benefitted from taking up Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) in the country, the volume of skilled workforce that has been produced and in which particular economic and service sector they are currently employed in has set up obstacles in the effort to create more and better jobs in Nepal, according to TVET officials and experts in Nepal.

Speaking at a panel interview recently broadcasted on Sagarmatha Television's Rupantaran program organized with the support of UNDP Nepal’s Support to Knowledge and Lifelong Learning Skills (SKILLS),   Vice Chair of the Council for Technical Education and Vocational Training (CTEVT) Kul Bahadur Basnet said that an integrated nationwide policy is required to ensure inclusive and quality TVET that will help in combating the problem of unemployment and underemployment in the country.

He said such a policy would also reverse the trend of Nepalese youths heading abroad for employment by encouraging entrepreneurship in the country itself.

Dr Basnet further said that CTEVT has already formed a high-level committee to make skill-oriented training in Nepal effective and inclusive as per the mandate of the Constitution of Nepal 2015 and, for that purpose, has opened up provincial offices of the apex body for TVET in each of the seven provinces.

“In the new federal set-up, the central government will be responsible for national TVET policy formulation, creating curriculum and qualification framework, providing accreditation and general quality control of TVET activities, while the regulation, management and implementation of TVET functions will come under the jurisdiction of provincial and local governments,” he said, adding that any review of the existing TVET Policy and the effective implementation of the same will depend on a “a strong mechanism with adequate resources” to support it.

He further said that if the National Vocational Qualification Framework that is being formulated at the moment is implemented after being endorsed by a supporting Government Act, that would go a long way in giving some sort of uniformity and coherence to TVET programmes across the country.

“Such a framework work will also help in executing our strategy of starting work-place based training programmes in Nepal,” he said.

Speaking at the same programme which mostly focused on discussing the state of the existing TVET policy in the country, the gaps therein and the way forward in reviewing and reforming the same to ensure more inclusive and quality TVET programmes. Dr Dilli Ram Rimal, Joint Secretary at the Ministry of Education (MoE)  informed that the ministry, together with the National Planning Commission and the support of development partnersm has conducted a nationwide TVET policy dialogue process to solicit feedbacks from TVET stakeholders and the people of Nepal in general to review TVET Policy 2012.

It must be noted that UNDP Nepal’s SKILLS Programme is supporting the MoE in the TVET policy dialogue process to make provisions in the new TVET policy more inclusive, coherence and relevant to the demands of the national economy.

“We are also working to minimize duplication in TVET-related activities conducted by various ministries, bring uniformity in their approach so as to ensure quality TVET,” Dr. Rimal added. He further said that once the report of the policy dialogue process is finalized, together with recommendations from all the ministries, a new TVET curriculum will be prepared and skill testing and certification works will be carried out, among other things.

Meanwhile, TVET expert and educationist Prof. Tanka Nath Sharma called for reforming the existing TVET Policy so that the new one to be formulated can come up with an equity-based TVET system that will play an instrumental role in expanding the job market in the country itself.

“All skill-oriented training to be provided thus should be closely linked with the job market of the country so that employers can find the kind of skilled workforce they need in the country itself,” he suggested.

He further said that the government should increase the budget for education and invest in TVET programmes for top quality technical and vocational education that is also professional and responsive to the demands of the market.  

Watch the full programme below:

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