PNG needs better technical trade skilled workforce: Official

Youth & Careers

Papua New Guinea Defence Force personnel Sero Owoefa, 29, from Eastern Highlands is among 156 participants who graduated from the Australia Pacific Training Coalition (APTC) in Port Moresby last Tuesday.
Owoefa, who is based with the Engineering Battalion at Igam Barracks in Lae, graduated with a certificate three in mechanical engineering-diesel fitting after undergoing training for six months.
Deputy Prime Minister Steven Davis congratulated the graduates for their hard work and commitment in attaining an Australian qualification. “Make good use of your qualification in the workforce as it is recognised internationally,” he said.
“The importance of technical and vocational education and training (Tvet) in PNG cannot be underestimated.
“It provides relevant skills in key sectors in the economy that is vital for the development of the country.”
Davis thanked APTC for its role in delivering high quality industry relevant training to Papua New Guineans and other Pacific islanders.
“APTC and other Tvet institutions were one of the topics discussed during the Pacific Islands Forum held recently in Tuvalu,” he said.
“Upskilling our people through these initiatives is the way forward for PNG.
“APTC has provided a wide range of technical skills and qualification in the Pacific since 2007.”
Steven commended the 10 women who also graduated.
“I commend the 10 women who are graduating in what used to be a male dominated trade in construction, fabrication and light vehicle mechanical technology,” he said.
“May you inspire other women to work in these fields.”
APTC chief executive officer Soli Middleby said a skilled workforce was as important as a professional workforce.
“PNG needs its lawyers, doctors, economist and scientists and we also need skilled technical and vocational trained workers,” she said.
“We need our mechanics, plumbers, fitters, engineers, carpenters and others to make our life easier.”
Middleby said APTC was not only a place for teaching excellence but a place for collaboration.
“APTC will continue to work in partnership with national and regional stakeholders to deliver technical training to Pacific men and women, boost employment outcomes, address skills shortages in the region and strengthening Pacific Tvet systems.”
A total of 156 students graduated with certificates in technical and vocational courses, including construction, air-conditioning and refrigeration, fashion design, carpentry, commercial cookery, fabrication trade, diesel fitting, fitting and machining, hospitality, light vehicle mechanical technology, plumbing and tourism.

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