Profile of the Skills Development Project

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) provided a concessional loan, entitled Skills Development Project to the People’s Republic of Bangladesh on 6 June 2008. The SwissAgency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) is cofinancing the project. The loan agreement was signed on 18 June 2008 and it became effective on 20 November 2008. The project is expected to be closed on 30 November 2013. The Ministry of Education is the Executing Agency, while the Directorate of Technical Education is the Implementing Agency of this project. This project is being managed by Mr. Babar Ali (Project Director) and is being advised by consultants deployed by Swisscontact, GTZ-IS, and Maxwell Stamp Ltd.

The objective of the project is to reduce poverty and promote economic growth in Bangladesh by increasing wage and self employment of graduates of skills training programs. The project has four components: (i) enhanced relevance of and access to technical and vocational education and training (TVET) programs, (ii) improved capacity for good quality TVET delivery, (iii) delivery of relevant skills training, and (iv) project management.

The project aims to empower women through skills training, among others. It will provide employable skills training so that graduates can be employed in domestic and overseas job markets. To those who want to start their own businesses it will provide entrepreneurship training and arrange credit for operation.

It will also upgrade skills of the underemployed as well as employed so that they can receive higher salaries for their increased labor productivity. The project provides managerial training to women workers for their promotion in industries.

At the time of the project approval by the Board of Directors of the Asian Development Bank, the total project cost was $66.7 million equivalent, including taxes and duties of $7.8 million. ADB is financing $50 million (75% of the project cost) from its Special Fund resources in various currencies. The contribution of the Government of Bangladesh is $16.7 million (25% of the project cost). The Government of Switzerland, through the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation provided a grant in the amount of $6 million to reduce the Government’s share of the project costs.

The project aims to increase both internal and external efficiency of TVET system. Training capacity will be expanded as well as the capacity utilization rate. The project will promote gender balance and give more preference to under privileged people. The quality of training will be increased by introducing market responsive, competency based training programs, employing competent administrators and qualified teachers and upgrading training equipment.

To increase external efficiency, the employment rate of TVET graduates will be increase by (i) establishing partnerships with industries, (ii) developing and updating curricula frequently to meet the labor market demands, and (iii) providing job placement services to students.

One of the big foreign exchange earners in the country is remittance by the Bangladeshi overseas workers. As their current wage is low, upgrading training programs will be provided to them, utilizing two funds for this purpose: the Competitive Program Development Fund and the Market Responsive Training Fund. With this intervention, at least 10 percent increase in the remittances is expected at the end of the project period.

For any inquiries, please contact:
Swisscontact South Asia Regional Office
Mr. Makbul Hossain
Phone: (017 4133 9473),
e-mail: (
training and arrange credit
for operation.

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