The SSCs are led by the private sector to monitor, review, and provide inputs for skills development policies, plans, and practices. It then provides feedback to the relevant authorities to overcome sector-wise deficiencies. The program’s main objective was to have discussions and dialogues among the representatives of CTEVT/NSTB, NVQS-P, and SSC members for the effectiveness of SSCs’ contributions towards the improvement of TVET system deliveries. In total, there were 50 participants in the program, with 25 members of various SSCs and TSCs.
Mr. Tek Bahadur Malla, Director of NSTB, shared a brief information about the history, evolution, and current status of NSTB. He also talked about the quality assurance initiatives and the way forward. The Team Leader of NVQS-P, Swisscontact, Mr. Subas Subedi presented about the context of SSCs in Nepal and its functioning in some other countries including the neighboring country, India. After the presentation by Mr. Subedi, Vice-president of CNI, Mr. Birendra Raj Pandey shared the private sector strategy for TVET. He explained the various initiatives being taken forward by the private sector for the development of the TVET sector and further shared the achievements of SSCs so far. Additionally, he also mentioned the challenges faced by the SSCs indicating that they are not fully engaged as far in the areas mentioned in their ToR. "We are also struggling to develop a mechanism to create demand for the sectoral need to feed into NSTB/NVQS", he added. After this, the Chair of Automobile SSC, Prof. Rabindra Bhattarai shared his experience and shared his team's happiness with their contribution as SSC members so far. "The recognition of skill test certification should come from the government first, which will lead the way for the private sector", he further mentioned.
After the presentations, the SSCs members participated in sector-wise group work. The participants discussed and noted down ideas on market demand to TVET authorities, bridging the collaboration between industry and TVET actors, and self-sustaining models of SSCs. After the participants completed the group work, the Senior Advisor of the NVQS Project, Mr. Devi Prasad Dahal shared the major takeaways of the program and also highlighted the prospects of SSCs. The Director of NSTB further expressed that SSCs have a fundamental role to play in the TVET sector. He requested the SSCs to advocate and lobby for the approval of the TVET Act which is not only necessary for providing a legal base for NVQS implementation but also crucial for the acceptance and legality of SSCs.
There was active participation from the members of all five SSCs and the respective technical sub-committee members in the event. The program was very interactive with the private sector putting forward their voices and concerns openly. The event met its objective of having a meaningful interaction and collecting ideas and views from the members of SSCs. It provided a platform to Sector Skill Committees and Technical Sub-committees’ members to gain a clear vision about the function of CTEVT and NSTB especially relating it to the engagement of the private sector in TVET.
The formation and engagement of SSCs by NSTB/NVQS is an exemplary step for Nepal in engaging the private sector effectively in TVET system reform.