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Afghanistan Skills Development Project

Project Title: Afghanistan Skills Development Project

Grant Amount: US$18 million

Approval Date: April 14, 2009

Closing Date: February 28, 2013

Program Objective

The development objective of the Afghanistan Skills Development Project is to increase access to high quality vocational education and training in the areas of Management, Administration and ICT in a manner that is equitable, efficient and sustainable.

Program Summary

A properly functioning Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) system is a key driver of economic growth. In Afghanistan, where years of strife have left the country devoid of skilled human capital at all levels and in all trades, TVET can be an important input to recovery and stability. Continued reconstruction efforts will likely increase the demand for skilled labor in the country. The demand for skilled labor, particularly for white-collar type occupations, is being met through labor importation. However, this is both an expensive and unsustainable model and these positions will eventually have to be taken over by Afghans themselves.

The Afghanistan Skills Development Project is designed to increase the number of immediately employable skilled persons by building in stages a high-quality Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) system that is equitable, market responsive, and cost effective. More specifically, the project is developing a demand-driven vocational education and training system, and provides training institutions autonomy to plan and customize their programs and establish partnerships with experienced national and international training providers.

The project is providing for the renovation of existing buildings and the development of new infrastructure for the proposed National Institute of Management and Administration (NIMA). Infrastructure includes academic buildings, residential accommodation for men and women, recreational buildings, utility buildings etc. The project is also supporting consultancy costs for academic management and for student scholarships. All other recurrent costs are covered by the ordinary budget of the Government of Afghanistan to ensure sustainability.

The project has three components: i) Component 1: Develop Regulatory and Quality Assurance Framework for TVET which is creating the necessary institutional conditions for a quality TVET system that is demand driven and oriented towards labor market needs; ii) Component 2: Improve Relevance, Quality and Efficiency of TVET which is improving the relevance, quality and efficiency of TVET programs, and increasing the number of graduates from these programs, through the establishment of a new institute, and by undertaking rehabilitation and reforms of a select number of other institutions. Initially, training programs are being contracted out to experienced, national and international training institutions through partnership arrangements; iii) Component 3: Skills Development Program and Market Linkages with a Rural Focus which is supporting a slice of the on-going activities by the National Skills Development Program, and building the capacity within National Skill Development Program (NSDP) and Ministry of Labor, Social Affairs and Martyred and Disabled (MOLSAMD) to undertake reforms in technical and vocational training, labor market assessments, and to strengthen industrial and market linkages; and iv) Component 4: Research, Monitoring & Evaluation which is providing routine, timely, and accurate information on program implementation and allow for the measurement of longer term impacts and independent research.

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