Bangladesh: Skills for Employment Investment Program
The investment program supports the Government of Bangladesh's reforms in skills development, anchored in the National Skills Development Policy (NSDP), 2011. It supports large-scale private sector involvement and public-private partnership, which is critical to meet existing and future labor market needs and to reduce skills gap. This in turn is crucial for Bangladesh to move away from the 'low-skill, low-wage equilibrium' to a 'higher skill, higher wage virtuous cycle' to become a middle-income country. The investment program helps the government scale-up skilling of new entrants and up-skilling of existing workers to contribute to higher growth of priority sectors. It strengthens skills development in Bangladesh by establishing a unified funding system (National Human Resource Development Fund) and enhancing overall coordination of the currently fragmented system through the National Skills Development Authority.
South Asia Department
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|Project Name||Skills for Employment Investment Program|
|Country / Economy||Bangladesh
|Project Type / Modality of Assistance||Grant
|Source of Funding / Amount||
|Strategic Agendas||Inclusive economic growth
|Drivers of Change||Gender Equity and Mainstreaming
Governance and capacity development
Private sector development
|Sector / Subsector||
Education / Education sector development
|Gender Equity and Mainstreaming||Gender equity|
|Description||The investment program supports the Government of Bangladesh's reforms in skills development, anchored in the National Skills Development Policy (NSDP), 2011. It supports large-scale private sector involvement and public-private partnership, which is critical to meet existing and future labor market needs and to reduce skills gap. This in turn is crucial for Bangladesh to move away from the 'low-skill, low-wage equilibrium' to a 'higher skill, higher wage virtuous cycle' to become a middle-income country. The investment program helps the government scale-up skilling of new entrants and up-skilling of existing workers to contribute to higher growth of priority sectors. It strengthens skills development in Bangladesh by establishing a unified funding system (National Human Resource Development Fund) and enhancing overall coordination of the currently fragmented system through the National Skills Development Authority.|
|Project Rationale and Linkage to Country/Regional Strategy||
The Bangladesh economy has grown rapidly at about 6% annually since 2003, up from 5% in the 1990s. The poverty headcount index declined sharply from 57% in 1992 to 31% in 2010. Social indicators have improved significantly, particularly for women. However, despite impressive progress, the 2010 labor force survey indicated that more than 60% of the labor force has either no education (40%) or up to primary education (22.8%); about 2 million young people enter the labor force every year. The average wage per worker has remained low at Tk200 per day for day laborers and Tk3,500 per month for garment workers.
With the approval of the National Education Policy and the NSDP, the government embarked on major education and training reforms. The National Education Policy emphasizes the overall importance of education and training, while the NSDP reinforces the importance of skills development and opens up the sector for major policy and institutional reforms. Bangladesh has achieved gender parity in primary and secondary education participation since 2000. Women's labor force participation grew from 26% in 2003 to 36% in 2010. A major opportunity for the country comes from its declining dependency ratio, from a high of 108% in 1974 to 66% in 2010, leading to an increasing share of the working age population in the next three decades. However, this opportunity cannot be capitalized on unless urgent investments are made in much higher quality schooling combined with at least a four-fold increase in skilling and/or up-skilling of the labor force, which is expected to increase from 56.7 million in 2010 to 78 million in 2025.
In its Perspective Plan 2021, Bangladesh articulates its vision to achieve middle-income status by 2021, including reducing the poverty rate by half. To accelerate economic growth from the current 6% to 8% and above, the government must address the skills shortage one of the key binding constraints. Skills development requires a two-pronged approach. First, it must be anchored in foundational skills that come from high-quality schooling combined with relevant vocational and technical skills to capitalize on the demographic dividend. Second, it requires scaling up skills training by four to eight times the current annual training capacity to (i) increase labor force productivity to contribute to higher average household income leading to higher gross domestic product, (ii) double exports within 10 years, (iii) double remittances through higher skills leading to higher per capita remittances, and (iv) promote economic diversification including trade facilitation and industrialization.
|Impact||Increased income and productivity of the working population aged 15 years and over.|
|Description of Outcome||Increased employment in priority sectors and skills for males and females.|
|Progress Toward Outcome||
The latest national data (2016-2017 Labor Force Survey) indicates:
i) formal sector employment of 14.9% (M:17.9%; F:8.2%); and
ii) unemployment for ages 25-34 at 5.7% and for ages 15-24 at 12.3%.
Comparable definition for the share of vocational training not available in the latest national report (2016-2017 Labor Force Survey).
Figures will be updated once latest national report becomes available.
|Description of Project Outputs||
market responsive inclusive skills training delivered
quality assurance system strengthened
effective program management
|Status of Implementation Progress (Outputs, Activities, and Issues)||
434,854 total trainees enrolled under Tranches 1, 2 and 3, of whom 31% were female. The number of certified new entrants was 343,704 out of whom 242,075 (70%) were employed. 72,572 poor and disadvantaged trainees received special stipends, of whom 50% were female.
RPL Program has been dropped from Tranche 1 due to overlapping efforts with the World Bank program.
As of 31 Dec 2020:
- 87 competency standards have been created and implemented, 47 of which were endorsed by BTEB; 60 learning materials have been produced and validated by the BTEB; and 87 assessment tools have been developed.
- 393,466 were certified in Tranche 1 and 2, of whom 31% were female.
- 116 public training providers have been registered with SEIP support.
- about 2826 trainers and 205 assessors have completed ToT. ToT programs ongoing in partnerships with different overseas and local institutions.
As of 31 Dec 2020, MTBF will be part of the revised national skills development policy discussions, which is ongoing.
Organogram of NSDA has been cleared by Finance Division. Recruitment process is expected to start soon.
NHRDF was established on 16 May 2018. Finance Division approved organogram, recruitment rules, operational manual and TVET fnancing manual for NHRDF. NHRDF has started to recruit its own staff.
Public institutes (about 116) under SEIP partnership granted partial delegation of powers for SEIP program.
As of December 2020, MTBF will be part of the revised national skills development policy discussions, which is ongoing.
Real time Trainee Management System (TMS) created under Tranche 1, is being used for monitoring various aspects of SEIP training. TMS established and operationalized with inputs from all training programs. Continuous improvement of the system is also ongoing.
Financial management and procurement action plan being implemented.
First tracer study and employer satisfaction survey have been completed, and the second is being prepared. The first skills gap analysis has been completed and the second is ongoing.
|Summary of Environmental and Social Aspects|
|Environmental Aspects||Category C|
|Involuntary Resettlement||Category C|
|Indigenous Peoples||Category B|
|Stakeholder Communication, Participation, and Consultation|
|During Project Design||Representatives of the project stakeholders were consulted during program preparation. The stakeholders consulted were the TVET regulating body, those responsible for labor market functioning, industry and other employers, private and nongovernment organization providers of TVET, and development partners. The program will seek inputs from other stakeholders, such as trade unions, new TVET students, TVET graduates, parents, and international employers, and secondary and higher education institutions to improve the quality of training.Likewise, public consultations were conducted with industry associations, public training institutions, the Bangladesh Bank small and medium enterprise program, and Palli-Karma Sahayak Foundation, which partners with more than 200 nongovernment organizations.|
|During Project Implementation||Regular consultation is undertaken during program implementation not only to identify any program-related grievances but also to seek feedback from the community on how it sees the program achieving its targets. Adequate participation of civil society organizations in project implementation is also ensured through constant dialogue, workshops, training programs, and dissemination of findings from monitoring and evaluation.|
|Consulting Services||All consultants will be selected using ADB's Guidelines on the Use of Consultants (2013, as amended from time to time). Since this program is being financed by ADB's Special Fund resources and ADB will also be administering cofinancing to be provided by the Government of Switzerland, ADB's member country eligibility restrictions will not apply to this program. Up to nine industry associations and PKSF will be contracted by the executive agency using single source selection to deliver skills training in agreed sectors and skills areas.|
|Procurement||The government will procure all goods, works, and consulting services for the investment program. Goods and civil works will be procured in accordance with ADB's Procurement Guidelines (2013, as amended from time to time). Goods valued at more than $1 million and works valued at more than $2 million will be procured using international competitive bidding and ADB's standard bidding documents, and be subject to prior review. Goods and works valued below the international competitive bidding threshold will be procured using national competitive bidding in accordance with the government's Public Procurement Act (2006) and it's Public Procurement Rules (2008), subject to modifications agreed by the government and ADB.|
|Responsible ADB Officer||Lee, Sunhwa|
|Responsible ADB Department||South Asia Department|
|Responsible ADB Division||Human and Social Development Division, SARD|
|Concept Clearance||18 Nov 2013|
|Fact Finding||29 Sep 2013 to 11 Oct 2013|
|MRM||04 Feb 2014|
|Approval||19 May 2014|
|Last Review Mission||-|
|Last PDS Update||30 Jun 2021|
MFF Facility Concept 0081-BAN
|Financing Plan||Loan Utilization|
|Total (Amount in US$ million)||Date||ADB||Others||Net Percentage|
|Project Cost||380.00||Cumulative Contract Awards|
Project Data Sheets (PDS) contain summary information on the project or program. Because the PDS is a work in progress, some information may not be included in its initial version but will be added as it becomes available. Information about proposed projects is tentative and indicative.
The Access to Information Policy (AIP) recognizes that transparency and accountability are essential to development effectiveness. It establishes the disclosure requirements for documents and information ADB produces or requires to be produced.
The Accountability Mechanism provides a forum where people adversely affected by ADB-assisted projects can voice and seek solutions to their problems and report alleged noncompliance of ADB's operational policies and procedures.
In preparing any country program or strategy, financing any project, or by making any designation of, or reference to, a particular territory or geographic area in this document, the Asian Development Bank does not intend to make any judgments as to the legal or other status of any territory or area.
|Title||Document Type||Document Date|
|কর্মসংস্থানের জন্য দক্ষতা উন্নয়ন বিনিয়োগ কার্যক্রম : প্রকল্প তথ্যপত্র||Translated PDS||Jun 2014|
|Skills for Employment Investment Program||Reports and Recommendations of the President||Apr 2014|
|Skills for Employment Investment Program: Facility Administration Manual||Facility Administration Manual||Apr 2014|
|Skills for Employment Investment Program: Gender Action Plan||Gender Action Plans||Apr 2014|
|Skills for Employment Investment Program||Procurement Plans||Apr 2014|
|Skills for Employment Investment Program: Periodic Financing Request for Project 1||Periodic Financing Request Reports||Apr 2014|
|Skills for Employment Investment Program||Framework Financing Agreement||Mar 2014|
|Skills Development Investment Program||Initial Poverty and Social Analysis||Dec 2013|
Safeguard Documents See also: Safeguards
Safeguard documents provided at the time of project/facility approval may also be found in the list of linked documents provided with the Report and Recommendation of the President.
|Title||Document Type||Document Date|
|MFF Skills for Employment Investment Program||Resettlement Frameworks||Dec 2013|
|MFF Skills for Employment Investment Program||Indigenous Peoples Planning Frameworks/Indigenous Peoples Development Frameworks||Dec 2013|
|MFF Skills for Employment Investment Program||Environmental Assessment and Review Framework||Dec 2013|
Evaluation Documents See also: Independent Evaluation
None currently available.
None currently available.
The Access to Information Policy (AIP) establishes the disclosure requirements for documents and information ADB produces or requires to be produced in its operations to facilitate stakeholder participation in ADB's decision-making. For more information, refer to the Safeguard Policy Statement, Operations Manual F1, and Operations Manual L3.
Requests for information may also be directed to the InfoUnit.
Loans for Skills Training to Boost Jobs and Wages in BangladeshADB will lend $350 million to Bangladesh to help public and private institutions scale up skills training for 1.25 million young workers so they are well-equipped to find jobs and meet the changing needs of today’s labor market.