LAHORE:CHIEF Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif has said that future of Pakistan is linked with vocational education and equipping the youth with modern knowledge and skills is essential for elimination of unemployment and rapid development of the country.
He said solid measures had been taken for the promotion of vocational education while the Technical Education and Vocational Training Authority (Tevta) had been made a vibrant institution and given the target of producing 500,000 skilled workers annually in accordance with the market needs. He said skilled workforce and vocational training were directly linked with economy, adding that Tevta had evolved a commendable roadmap for the promotion of vocational education and it should be implemented rapidly. He said there was a need for concentrating on modern machinery, master trainers and teachers’ training.
The chief minister was presiding over separate meetings regarding Tevta, the Punjab Small Industries Corporation (PSIC) and Skills Development Programme in Punjab at the Chief Minister’s Secretariat here on Thursday. He said only those counties had progressed which had equipped their youth with modern education, adding that Korea, Japan, Singapore, Malaysia and other countries had not only made rapid progress but were also earning huge foreign exchange by producing a skilled workforce. He said the Punjab government had reorganised and reactivated Tevta and the authority’s strategy for the promotion of vocational education was appreciable. He issued directions for adopting all the possible measures for the vocational training of the maximum number of youth through institutions of Tevta.
Shahbaz said vocational education in accordance with the market needs should be imparted to the youth so that they could immediately be adjusted in industrial institutions. Lauding the briefing given by Tevta Chairman Saeed Alvi regarding promotion of vocational education, the chief minister said the programme was highly encouraging.
While reviewing the performance of Punjab Small Industrial Corporation (PSIC), the CM said that it should be made such a vibrant and proactive institution as could play an effective role for the promotion of cottage industry. He said the PSIC showed excellent performance in the past but it was now a dead horse. He said that a strategy should be evolved for revitalising the institution for the promotion of small industry for eliminating unemployment and enabling the skilled workers stand on their feet.
Later, addressing a meeting regarding Skills Development Programme in Punjab, the CM said promotion of technical education was the need of the hour for the progress of the country and elimination of unemployment. He said that private sector should be encouraged to play its role in the vocational training of the youth. He said that had an effective strategy been adopted 10 to 15 years ago for the promotion of vocational education, the situation would have been different. He said there was a need to have a prompt paradigm shift. He termed the idea given by Chief Minister’s Special Initiatives Entity Chairman Haroon Khawaja as important and said that he had presented a model for the promotion of vocational education and encouragement of the private sector. He said recommendations should be submitted to him within seven days after the detailed consideration of the model which would be presented before the cabinet for final approval while special funds would be allocated for that purpose in the next budget.
The meeting took a number of decisions for improving efficiency of the PSIC. PSIC MD Farhan Aziz Khawaja gave a detailed briefing regarding the performance of the institution.
Member National Assembly Abdul Majeed Khanakhel, Member Provincial Assembly Sanaullah Khan Mastikhel, the chief secretary, secretary Industries, chairman Punjab Information Technology Board, experts and senior officers of the departments concerned were present.The news