Roundtable Discussion on Mainstreaming Decent Work Agenda in the National Competency Standards of Bangladesh

Jointly organised by B-SkillFUL, National Skills Development Council and Informal Sector Industry Skills Council

National Skills Development Council (NSDC) Secretariat, Informal Sector Industry Skills Council (IS-ISC) and B-SkillFUL project (funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and European Union and implemented by Swisscontact) organised a Roundtable Discussion on Mainstreaming Decent Work Agenda in the National Competency Standards of Bangladesh on 30 January 2018 at the Conference Room of NSDC Secretariat, 423-428 Tejgaon Industrial Area, Dhaka-1208.

The event was chaired by NSDC CEO, Mr. A.B.M. Khorshed Alam. IS-ISC President, Mirza Nurul Ghani Shovon and B-SkillFUL project’s Team Leader Matiur Rahaman, also spoke at the event. Dr. Jakir Hossain, Professor, Institute of Bangladesh Studies, University of Rajshahi, presented his findings of the study on Assessing Current Status of Labour Rights and Decent Work in Informal Enterprises, which paved the path to understand the need of such standards.

Representatives from other Industry Skills Councils, Bangladesh Technical Education Board (BTEB), International Labour Organisation (ILO), among others have given their valuable comments in this discussion. It was discussed that issues of decent work should be part of curriculum guides, and for that it needs to be included in the National Standards.

It is important to note that Bangladesh has committed to attain the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which include Achieve Gender Equality and Empower all Women (Target 5.5) and Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all (Target 8.5 and 8.8). B-SkillFUL aims to contribute to these targets by facilitating demand-driven skills training for poor and disadvantaged men and women in order to boost their employability.

As such there is a need to raise awareness on the issues of decent work by including them within the existing standards. The project is in discussion with NSDC, the apex body for skills development in Bangladesh and are assessing the ways for mainstreaming decent work agenda within the National Standards.