TechInAfrica – International Development Association (IDA) has just received a $293 million of credit and grant from World Bank in order to support a project to level-up the quality of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Institutes in East Africa.
The project is called the East Africa Skills for Transformation and Regional Integration Project (EASTRIP), aiming for the development of TVET technician training program in three East African countries including Kenya, Ethiopia, and Tanzania. Additionally, it will be applied in transport, energy, manufacturing, as well as ICT sectors mainly in these three Eastern African countries. The training is short term and part of regional support in developing national skills which can help to generate economic development, regional trade, as well as integration.
The World Bank Education Practice Manager for Eastern and Southern Africa, Sajitha Bashir said: “We recognize the transformational opportunity that human capital development and regional integration present for East Africa’s future. The World Bank is committed to supporting the development of high-quality skills to expand regional economic corridors and regional infrastructure projects that can unlock the continent’s growth potential.”
As African countries are often isolated in the economy, the program will indeed help to integrate the countries within the region and create larger markets. Thus, the program hopefully will accelerate economic growth and poverty reduction in the region.
For your information, the total exports of the region are only 12% in the continent. Judging from the percentage, it is noticeable to be the lowest in the continent. Moreover, the exports from other continents such as South East Asia and the European Union are even much higher with 25% and 60% of exports for each.
There are many other projects conducted to uncover larger markets and trade in the continent, including the Northern Corridor Integration Project (NCIP) and the Central Corridor Transit Transport Facilitation Agency (CCTTFA). These projects mainly aim to provide education training in order to encourage skilled labors within Sub-Saharan Africa. Additionally, the projects expect to gain economic growth by improving and developing access to secondary and higher education.
Xiaoyan Liang, the World Bank Lead Education Specialist and Team Leader of the Project said: “Shortage of specialized technical and vocational education and training is particularly acute in transport, energy, manufacturing and ICT. If not addressed, the skills gap could seriously dampen the industrialization and integration agenda in East Africa.”
Speaking of the EASTRIP project in the three East African countries, it will be carried out by the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of Ethiopia, the Ministry of Education of Kenya, the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology of Tanzania, as well as the Inter-University Council for East Africa.