Morocco focuses on youth vocational training
By Hassan Benmehdi for Magharebia in Casablanca – 15/08/12
Demand is growing in Morocco's labour market. The emergence of new trades and the accelerated development of the economy, along with increased competition among companies, require suitable vocational training for young people.
"The economic dynamics of the labour market in Morocco require us to analyse the effects of those developments on the vocational training system, if those dynamics are to be sustained," Prime Minister Abdelilah Benkirane told an audience of young students at the Office for Vocational Training and Work Promotion (OFPPT) August 6th in Casablanca.
"We need to respond to current and future requirements in terms of providing the skills we need," the head of government added.
He continued by saying that in order to improve the training to fit the needs of the national economy and reduce the rate of joblessness, the National Observatory for Employment had been set up as "a benchmark for efficient investment in the field of basic and continuing training".
At the meeting, trophies were awarded to OFPPT students who had distinguished themselves in their final training projects and technological research.
At the same event, an exhibition was organised to present a number of projects set up by OFPPT trainees in various fields including mechanics, electronics, air conditioning, electricity, film and audio-visual media.
Prizes and certificates of merit were also awarded to the best training managers and a number of socioeconomic figures who had worked alongside OFPPT in the development of vocational training.
Electronics trainees Nawal and Asmaâ said that the time they had spent at OFPTT in Casablanca had enabled them to deepen their knowledge. "We've developed projects in the digital sector, which we feel is booming in Morocco," they said.
In the audio-visual field, Monstassir Mohamed said his choice of study did not come about by chance: "I opted for this field because I'm convinced it's a trade for the future and requires perfection."
Economics analyst Leila Moâtamir explained to Magharebia that the fundamental problem remains the mismatch between training and the demands of the labour market.
"The business model for vocational training needs constant improvement these days to offer qualified and productive human resources," Moâtamir said, adding that it is always important to keep a watchful eye on major developments in the economy.
OFPPT Director General Labri Bencheikh told reporters at the ceremony that work was under way to establish the organisation as a key player in providing qualifications for young people as well as ensure that the training offered matches the current and future needs of a dynamic, competitive economy.
"In terms of what has been achieved, training is now offered by 307 establishments (127 more since 2002), training 232,000 people in 2011-2012, including more than 300 from 29 African countries," Bencheikh said.
With plans to train one million young people over the period from 2012 to 2016, Benkirane has promised government support for OFPPT to encourage the inclusion of young people into the world of work.
OFPPT expects to admit 310,000 trainees for its 2012-2013 programme, which represents an increase of 438% relative to 2002-2003.
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