December 06, 2019
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    Lanka to set up fully-fledged Ocean University

    August 31, 2019

    The Technical, Vocational Education Training (TVET) sector is poised to receive a US $ 50 million, to set up a fully-fledged Ocean University in Sri Lanka. Also nine new hi-tech training facilities are to be set up across the country, modelled on the lines of the ultra-modern South Korean backed KTEC Training Centre unveiled in Orugodawatte recently, Minister of Industry, Commerce, Resettlement of Protracted Displaced Persons, Cooperative Development, Skills Development & Vocational Training (ICTPDPCDSDVT) Rishad Bathiudeen said. He was addressing a gathering at the launch of modernised Gampaha Technical College (GTC) in Gampaha.

    Bathiudeen said he has had discussions with Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe on creating more modern TVET training centres.State Minister Buddhika Pathirana, former President Chandrika Bandaranike Kumaratunge, Minister of Skills Development and Vocational Training Karunatilleke Paranavithana, Minister of Transport Arjuna Ranatunga, South Korean Ambassador in Sri Lanka Heon Lee, and the Country Director of Colombo Representative Office of Korea Eximbank Daekyoo Park were present on the ocassion.

    The GTC, launched exactly 20 years ago, has been modernised by a US $4.5 mn South Korean loan funding which is part of the second phase of the two stage US $26 mn project (the first stage was the Korea-Sri Lanka National Vocational Training Institute launched on August 21, in Orugodawatte). “We are also planning to set up a fully-fledged Ocean University at a cost of US $ 50 mn. We will be able start work on it in the coming weeks. The Ocean University we have at present is not a fully fledged institution,” said Minister Bathiudeen.

    “A Sri Lankan industry study last year showed that 400,000 new jobs will be available in Sri Lanka in the next three years in hotel, tourism and industry sectors. According to a study by the University of Colombo 58% of unfilled vacancies in Sri Lanka are in apparel sector 20% in food industry and 33% in other manufacturing sectors. Therefore the Skills Development and vocational training institutions under my Ministry we are working to address this situation.”

    The Director General of the Department of Technical Education and Training (DTET) P.N.K Malalasekera said: “The NVQ certifications here include electrical, CNC programming, pneumatics and hydraulics, telecommunications, automobile tech, electronics, secretarial training and language training that are offered absolutely free of charge.

    The South Korean government is facilitating Korean language studies and youth completing studies in GTC will have priority for South Korean employment.” South Korean Ambassador Heon Lee stressed of the importance of TVET in development. “In South Korea, in ‘60s and ‘70s, TVET primarily aimed to provide low level training to light industries. In ‘80s and ‘90s TVET expanded to heavy industries such as ship building and electronics. The official direction of South Korean TVET is to create the fourth industrial revolution for sustainable growth. TVET also has been a cornerstone in the development history of Sri Lanka like it did in South Korea.

    Hence I would like to mention that this project, supported by Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF) of South Korea, is an effort to share Korea’s development experience with Sri Lanka. Eventually this support measure will support the low income bracket by providing technical training-we shall provide then high quality vocational training, leading to poverty reduction, the primary objective of sustainable development goals.”

     

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