The Ministry of Labour‘s adaptation to COVID-19 working conditions, facilitated with IT infrastructure support by the VSDP

Myanmar was struck with the Covid-19 outbreak in late March, which has led to governance and economic mechanisms quickly having to adapt to online operations to follow rules obliging physically distant working conditions. Establishing a digital government strategy and e-Government system had already been labeled a priority in the 2016 economic policy, but actions taken to implement this have been increased following the outbreak of the pandemic. Many ministries were equipped with limited IT facilities to fully function within a work-from-home culture, which hindered prompt adaptations of online operations.

In order to contribute to the 4Ps (Policy Maker, Participation, Preventive Measure and Partner) crucial in the fight against COVID-19, the Vocational Skills Development Program (VSDP) supported the government partner Ministry of Labour, Immigration and Population (MoLIP) with the setup of an optimized video conferencing/online meeting facility. The IT equipment has been installed in the minister’s conference room in Nay Pyi Taw in July. The new IT infrastructure will support the MoLIP in participating in policy and strategy discussions with national and international stakeholders as well as addressing the problems for Myanmar workers in and outside the country.

The VSDP has been collaborating with the MoLIP on  skills testing and certification since 2015 and will continue implementing its planned activities beyond Covid-19 with necessary adaptations. In partnership with the National Skills Standards Authority (NSSA), the program supports selected sectorial committees in the development of occupational competency standards for skills-testing and certification and provided support for setting-up assessment centers to conduct the skills testing and certification

The VSDP aims to promote improved livelihood opportunities for women and men in targeted areas and occupations in Myanmar. The Program is implemented by Swisscontact Myanmar and financed by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC). Find out more about VSDP’s work in policy and stakeholder engagement in this factsheet.