April 14, 2024, 9:07 pm

Project to boost IT training in all 64 districts on cards

  • Update Time : Monday, January 22, 2024
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Online Desk:

The government is set to launch a project aimed at providing IT training in 64 districts to empower the youth and bolster the IT skills landscape nationwide.

As part of this initiative, the Ministry of Youth and Sports has submitted the project proposal titled “Capacity Building of Department of Youth Development- (second phase)” to the Planning Commission, seeking a funding of Tk47 crore, an official of the Planning Commission told the Daily Sun.

The Project Evaluation Committee (PEC) recently conducted a meeting on the project on 18 October 2023, chaired by Mosammat Nasima Begum, member (Senior Secretary) of the Department of Socio-Economic Infrastructure under the Planning Commission, the official mentioned.

If all goes well, the project will proceed to the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) meeting soon for approval. And, once approved, the Department of Youth Development will execute the project by October 2026, added the officials.

The project aims to enhance the capacity of five training courses provided by 79 youth training centres nationwide, as outlined in the project proposal.

These courses encompass crucial skills, including computer programming, networking, webpage design, graphics designing, electronics, electrical and house wiring, refrigeration and air conditioning, hardware and troubleshooting, freelancing, and outsourcing, as specified in the proposal.

Following the successful implementation of the first phase from 2016-2019 at a cost of Tk60.66 crore, the second phase is considered essential to address equipment shortages and upgrades. The project has received evaluation from IMED, acknowledging its role in youth employment, self-employment, and poverty alleviation.

At the 18 October PEC meeting, the director (planning) of the Department of Youth Development, emphasised the rising demand for skilled manpower in various IT fields, says the meeting minute.

He added that the proposed training courses are designed to run for six months in 79 youth training centers across 64 districts.

While the project is a significant step toward tackling youth employment challenges, recent data from the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) underscores the need for more extensive efforts.

According to the “Population and Housing Census 2022” report by the BBS, the country’s population is approximately 16.98 crore, with 28% being youth.

The working-age population (15-59), constituting 65.15% of the total, presents a substantial opportunity if effectively employed. However, challenges persist in providing suitable jobs for the growing youth population.

The report indicates that technical education accounts for only 0.81% of the total population aged five years and above, a crucial indicator for creating skilled workforces.

Economists express concerns over the inadequate representation of technical education in Bangladesh, questioning the nation’s ability to cultivate a skilled workforce.

Dr Zahid Hussain, former lead economist of the World Bank’s Dhaka office, suggests increasing the labour force in high-productivity sectors and creating a skilled workforce to harness the demographic dividend advantage.

This initiative aligns with the government’s vision not only to enhance IT training but also strategically address youth unemployment challenges in the country, as highlighted by experts.

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