Global EditionASIA 中文双语Français
Home / World / China-Africa

China skills up young Africans with initiatives

By RADING GERRO in Nairobi, Kenya | China Daily | Updated: 2022-03-30 07:25
Share - WeChat
A trainee is guided at a Luban Workshop in Cairo, Egypt, on Aug 16. The China-aided workshops provide vocational training. SUI XIANKAI/XINHUA

Sustained support from China for vocational education and technical training is putting African countries on track to address talent deficiencies, a perennial challenge for the development of the continent.

"China offered not only to fund but also equip our TVET (technical and vocational education and training) institutions with state-of-the-art equipment ideal for modern training industrial needs," said Kipkirui Langat, director-general of Kenya's Technical and Vocational Education and Training Authority. "The investment has really shaped the quality of trainees from our institutions."

Kenya has intensified educational reform in recent years to meet the skills deficit seen as hindering the nation's industrial growth and development goals set out in its development blueprint Vision 2030.

Through the Technical and Vocational Education and Training Act, Kenya aimed at addressing the skills gap facing its manufacturing sector. However, a major obstacle to this vision was the huge financial problem in revamping the sector, forcing the government to seek partnerships.

Glory Mutungi, chairperson for the Kenya Association of Technical Training Institutions, said the government hopes to greatly enlarge enrollment in TVET institutions, which stands at more than 330,000 students, over the next few years to meet the demands of various sectors.

Kenya targets to have a TVET center in each of its 290 constituencies by the end of the year.

With active participation from partners such as China, Kenya's milestones for TVET have been made possible, she said.

One such project is the Africa Tech Challenge, which was initiated and funded by AVIC International Holding, a State-owned Chinese company.

Ma Chengyuan, AVIC's chief representative of its Kenya office, said the Africa Tech Challenge aims to improve the employment skills of young local talent, and various vocational skills training and competitions have been held, which improved the employment skills of local youth and promoted the integration of teaching and industrial application.

In addition to Kenya, the company has also provided training to young people from other African countries such as Ghana, Uganda and Zambia. To date, it has trained more than 290 technical teachers and students.

In Liberia, vocational education and training from Chinese experts have also transformed the lives and careers of many locals.

"We received hands-on training and knowledge transfer from our instructors. They taught us how to go about with the regular maintenance of the elevator," said James Flomo, elevator management technician at Kenya's finance and development planning ministry, recalling his monthlong training in Changsha, Hunan province, in 2019.

The training program provided Flomo and other Liberians with the knowledge and skills to contribute to Liberia's technical capacity, and helped him secure a government job after returning, which he appreciated.

The writer is a freelance journalist for China Daily.

Most Viewed in 24 Hours
Copyright 1995 - . All rights reserved. The content (including but not limited to text, photo, multimedia information, etc) published in this site belongs to China Daily Information Co (CDIC). Without written authorization from CDIC, such content shall not be republished or used in any form. Note: Browsers with 1024*768 or higher resolution are suggested for this site.
License for publishing multimedia online 0108263

Registration Number: 130349