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“A new jobs pool and measures in place to address any skills shortages in the Pacific.”
That is the ideals behind the Pacific Skills Summit which gets underway today at the University of the South Pacific’s Laucala Campus in Suva.
President of Nauru and Chairman of the Pacific Islands Forum, Baron Waqa said the two-day summit is the outcome of the Pacific Skills Partnership which was agreed to at the Forum Leaders Meeting last year.
“We all aspire to a region that is inclusive, productive and sustainable. Foundational to achieving this is a skills pool that generates new jobs, underpins business success and supports economic growth while leaving no one behind. The region needs a flexible and inclusive vehicle to explore and find new ways to address our skills challenges.”
USP’s Pro-Chancellor, Winston Thomson says the summit fits in with what the University has been working to address over the last 51 years.
“As the region’s leading human resource development institution which has been up-skilling and building capacity in the Pacific for the past 50, going on 51 years now. The University’s mission is grounded in responding to the skills needs of the region. Like the university, this partnership was envisioned as a Pacific-led vehicle to seek out and engage in solutions to the skills challenges of our region.”
Partnering with the Australia Pacific Training Coalition, the Board Chair Kaye Scofield notes while they are only 12 years old in the region, they have graduated 14,000 students from the Pacific.
The Pacific Skills Summit she said is a platform to capitalize on the invaluable work already done.
“It’s potential to bring regional attention to the critical issues of training, skills and jobs. Because of its potential to encourage greater investment in skills training and not simply by the government, but also by business.”
The Pacific Skills Summit will see some 300 delegates from government, civil society, educational institutions and the private sector participating in the two-day event which concludes tomorrow.
SOURCE: FBC NEWS/PACNEWS
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