LAHORE: Pursuing efforts to improve income generation opportunities for the residents of target districts, Punjab Skills Development Fund (PSDF) awarded contracts worth Rs344 million to various vocational training service providers from the public and private sector, as well as the garments industry under its new scheme ‘Skills for Garments’.
Contracts were inked at a signing ceremony where PSDF CEO Ali Sarfraz signed them on behalf of the body with representatives from the 14 training organisations. These training organisations include some of the biggest names such as Nishat group, Crescent and US apparel.
To get maximum benefit out of the Generalised System of Preferences for trade Plus (GSP+) status, Punjab Government and the United Kingdom have already approved a fund of £50 million. Under this fund, half of which has been arranged by the Punjab government and half by the UK, the human resource of Pakistan in textile industry will be upgraded to meet the standards that the European Union market demands.
Launch of the scheme will further supplement Punjab government’s endeavours for supporting garments sector in Punjab. It is expected that the ‘Skills for Garments’ will provide ancillary support for provision of required manpower to the garments sector.
The garments industry in Punjab has taken the initiative of being the training service provider itself as some of the industry-owned training service providers have been selected to impart training. Under this scheme, PSDF will fund training of 9,000 individuals (both male and female) from seven districts of Punjab including Lahore, Gujranwala, Sheikhupura, Narowal, Sargodha, Chiniot, and Faisalabad.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 25th, 2014.
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