Australia wants all to benefit from Bangladesh’s economic growth

Australian envoy launches project on quality education

Australia wants all to benefit from Bangladesh’s economic growth

Dhaka, April 28 : Australian High Commissioner to Bangladesh Julia Niblett on Sunday said her country wants to ensure that all people in Bangladesh are able to contribute to and benefit from Bangladesh’s economic growth.

“We’re committed to ensuring that no-one is left behind in Bangladesh’s development,” she said while launching an Australian Aid project in partnership with the Underprivileged Children’s Educational Program (UCEP), ‘Quality Education and Skills Transformation’ (QuEST).

The High Commissioner said it is a regrettable fact that low skill levels in the Bangladesh labour force continue to limit the country’s economic growth potential.

She said the current labour force is under educated and under skilled. “Only half of the workforce is literate and less than 1 percent have received some form of vocational education.”

The High Commissioner mentioned that Bangladesh recognises that it needs to improve education and skills development in order to fulfill its objective of achieving middle-income status.  It understands that skill development is vitally important for this.

“The Australian government is delighted to be commencing this new partnership with UCEP to work together to tackle these issues,” she said.

Australia is committed to supporting the government of Bangladesh in increasing access to quality primary education for poor and disadvantaged out-of-school children in urban areas and implementing the market driven Technical Vocational Education and Training system underpinned by the government of Bangladesh’s National Skills Development Policy, said the High Commission.

Through this partnership, DFAT aims to strengthen the work of UCEP to help fulfill Bangladesh’s development objectives.

Australia will invest AUD12 million over three years (March 2019 to June 2022) and this investment will develop a new partnership with UCEP to expand the Australian Aid Program’s focus on addressing skill gaps.

UCEP provides pathways through education into vocational skill training and job placement for poor urban children and adolescents, particularly those who have dropped out of or never enrolled in school.

UCEP courses are recognised by the government of Bangladesh and those respond to the needs of the private sector.

The project will also help UCEP strengthen institutional capacity with a major focus on strengthening systems for disability and gender inclusion, said the High Commission.

Parveen Mahmud, Chairperson of UCEP Board of Governance, Tahsinah Ahmed, Executive Director of UCEP and Fahmida Shabnam, Team Leader, Human Development Team of DFID were also present.

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