The Board of Investment (BOI) recently collaborated with the National Apprentice and Industrial Training Authority (NAITA) to address the dearth of human capital at the level of technical skills, which has been a challenge for industries over a period of time, a spokesman said.
The enterprises at the Horana Export Processing Zone (EPZ) had encountered a shortage of electricians, welders, plumbers and fitters, etc needed for the operation of the factories. This very factor prompted the BOI to team up with the NAITA where they agreed to provide necessary skills, expertise, and training to school leavers so that the scarcity of the workforce can be mitigated.
On top of that, the apprentices will be absorbed into relevant companies and factories upon the completion of the training as per the requirement of the enterprises.
Moreover, this move will not be confined to the Horana EPZ but will be extended to other zones as well. BOI is of the opinion that the new initiative will vastly help students mould themselves and find the ideal career path, he said.
The official function of promulgating this worthy action was held recently at the Horana Export Processing Zone where a group of 22 school leavers living in the vicinity of the Horana area, commenced their training.
Commenting on the initiative, BOI Chairman Raja Edirisuriya said, “This initiative does not only create new human capital in BOI enterprises but address the national requirement of shortage of technically skilled human capital,”
“Upon completion, students are awarded the NVQ certificate, which will help them go up to a degree level. Thus, I firmly request the students to make use of this opportunity, to develop their skills and find the ideal career path,” he added.
“Moreover, the Senior Deputy Director of the Horana EPZ and his staff deserve kudos for making this initiative happen alongside the NAITA. Also, let me extend my gratitude to the officials of the NAITA for going the extra mile to help these students. Last but not least, an institution like NAITA has much to bring to the table in terms of empowering and upskilling the youth of the country,” Edirisuriya further added.
Meanwhile, BOI Director General Renuka M Weerakone said, “This initiative takes us yet another step further towards contributing to social upliftment through the BOI,”
“This worthy cause will also prevent students from migrating due to unemployment because we have set the tone for them to grow and brush up on their hidden skills,” Weerakone added.
“We are also pleased to witness the happy faces of parents who now feel secure and buoyant about the future of their children, who have joined the training program. Hence, we look forward to expanding this initiative to other zones as well,” she concluded.