WASHINGTON, December 14, 2021– The World Bank has approved $300 million in financing from the International Development Association (IDA)* to help Benin promote employment and economic opportunities for youth and women through access to technical and vocational education and training and support for quality entrepreneurship.
The Vocational Training and Entrepreneurship for Employment project aims to help young people and women meet current and future labor market needs. Forty-six thousand current and future students will benefit from better quality technical and vocational education and training, mainly in trade schools. The project also provides for teachers and managers of technical and vocational education and training using a more modern system of personnel training to enrich and strengthen their professional training, while granting greater autonomy to school heads. . In addition, 2,200 entrepreneurs and businesses will receive training and funding under the entrepreneurship component. Other downstream beneficiaries also include the global entrepreneurship and private sector support ecosystem. The project will benefit the Beninese economy as a whole by producing better educated and more qualified workers, equipped with professional and entrepreneurial skills in line with the needs of the labor market.
“Access to decent jobs is becoming more and more difficult for young graduates whose training is often not in line with the needs of the labor market. Investing in skills training and entrepreneurship can help find solutions to unemployment,” says Atou Seck, World Bank Country Manager for Benin. “This funding will help Benin accelerate the government’s ambitious program in technical education, vocational training and entrepreneurship.
For the 2019-2020 school year, students in public and private technical and vocational training establishments represented only 3.8% of all students in general secondary education. Administration and management are the preferred fields of study at the university and represent more than 53% of enrolments. To reverse this trend, the government has developed the Technical and Vocational Training Strategy (2019-2030) which includes major investments in skills development for Beninese youth in sectors such as agriculture, industry and education. Digital Economy.
“Benin has embarked on a path of development that will require a reduction in the gap between training and employment. The government aims to make technical education and vocational training a powerful engine for the structural transformation of the economy and to create an ecosystem conducive to entrepreneurship,” says Romuald Wadagni, Minister of State and Minister of Economy and Finance of Benin. “More than anything, a qualifying training that corresponds to the current and future needs of the market is necessary if we want to achieve full employment..”
*The International Development Association (IDA) is the World Bank’s fund for the poorest. Established in 1960, it provides grants and loans at low or no interest rates for projects and programs that stimulate economic growth, reduce poverty and improve the lives of the poor. IDA is one of the largest sources of aid to the world’s 76 poorest countries, 39 of them in Africa. IDA resources bring positive change to the 1.6 billion people who live in IDA countries. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 113 countries. Annual commitments have grown steadily and have averaged $21 billion over the past three years, with about 61% going to Africa.