World Bank Approves US$40 Million Project to Improve Skills for Better Jobs in Cambodia

PHNOM PENH: Approximately 33,000 Cambodians are expected to receive improved training and labour market services as a result of a US$40 million credit approved by the World Bank's Board of Executive Directors on Thursday, a press release stated on May 24.

The credit from the World Bank's International Development Association (IDA) aims to enhance the quality and relevance of job-related skills among the country's workforce and increase the employability and earnings of workers.

It will support the Skills for Better Jobs Project, which seeks to strengthen technical and vocational education and training, improve career guidance and job search support, and better engage employers when developing training programmes.

's economy and employment have grown rapidly in recent decades as macroeconomic stability, openness to trade, and preferential access to Western markets helped the country attract overseas . However, the quality of jobs is low: 89 percent of jobs in the country are low skilled and a large share are informal.

The five-year Skills for Better Jobs Project is designed to help Cambodia's economy diversify into sectors that require more medium-skilled occupations. It will be implemented by the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training and Skills Development Fund.

“As Cambodia aims to move up value chains and diversify its production, upskilling its current and upcoming workforce will be key to attracting more and better foreign direct investment and responding to employer needs,” said Ms. Maryam Salim, World Bank Country Manager for Cambodia.

“Technical skills training, when demand-responsive and supplemented with training in complementary skills, such as digital and behaviuoral skills, can support Cambodia in achieving its objectives,” she said.

The key expected outcomes of this project include greater employer satisfaction with the skills of training-programme graduates; an increase in the share of graduates who find jobs paying more than the national median wage; increasing industry's voice in training design and delivery, and facilitating dialogue and collaboration between training institutions and employers; an improved labour market information system; and increasing the number individuals receiving job counseling and career guidance. AKP

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