In fulfilling the Government of Sri Lanka’s vision and priority to produce ‘smart technocrats’ who are globally recognised and who possess internationally acclaimed qualifications required by the local and international employment markets, Huawei Sri Lanka recently inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the National Apprentice and Industrial Training Authority (NAITA) a leading vocational training organisation in Sri Lanka functioning under the State Ministry of Skills Development, Vocational Education, Research and Innovation under the purview of Ministry of Education to setup a NAITA-Huawei ICT Academy to contribute and enhance vocational education and training for the youth in the telecommunication sector with hardware installation skills.
State Minister of Skills Development, Vocational Education, Research and Innovation Dr. Seetha Arambepola, State Ministry of Skills Development, Vocational Education, Research and Innovation Secretary Deepa Liyange, National Apprentice and Industrial Training Authority (NAITA) Chairman Tharanga Naleen Gamlath, and Huawei Technologies Lanka Chief Executive Officer Liang Yi were present at the MOU signing ceremony.
Speaking at the occasion State Minister Dr. Seetha Arambepola asserted, “Government envisions and will put efforts to increase the employability of the youth of Sri Lanka by developing skills of highest technological qualities, and that Huawei ICT Academy will further improve ICT vocational training of job seeking youth enabling them to face the challenges of digitalisation with enhanced skills.” She further noted that in future this Huawei ICT Academy will be expanding to remote areas in Sri Lanka.
“We expect this to target on upskilling over 300 passionate young people annually, with knowledge and practice of principles as On-site Telecommunication Engineers, including Wireless and Datacom Hardware Installation, Environment Health and Safety (EHS) and quality improvement. And we are delighted to partner with Huawei in this program,” NAITA Chairman Tharanga Naleen Gamlath said.
“Talent supply and demand are somewhat disconnected, and the model struggles to support the industry’s development. In this context, a long-term strategy that includes resource sharing, complementary advantages, and joint development between universities, vocational training institutes and enterprises is needed to efficiently match the talent supply with the demand,” Huawei Sri Lanka Chief Executive Liang Yi said, adding that this MOU is another step and initiative taken by Huawei in the ICT talent ecosystem building in Sri Lanka.
“We aim to become a foundation for cultivating digital economy talent in this beautiful Asian nation. In the new era of ICT development, Huawei will accelerate scientific and technological innovation; we will also continue to invest in knowledge innovation and talent development through furthering cooperation between Ministry of Education and the State Ministry of Skills Development, Vocational Education, Research and Innovation in Government of Sri Lanka and associated organisations to help building and nourishing Sri Lankan professional talent in digital technologies,” Liang Yi affirmed.
Whilst there is enormous potential for Sri Lankan talents to achieve vocational training in digital technologies and hardware sector with the setting up of NAITA-Huawei ICT Academy, Huawei further foresees to bridge the gap between demand of ICT enterprises sector and the supply from vocational training institutes to provide more technical and skilful talent, more advanced technologies, and more support to innovation and entrepreneurship. According to Liang Yi this will facilitate a virtuous cycle and support the sustainable development of the ICT industry of Sri Lanka.
NAITA-Huawei ICT Academy would further contribute to enhance vocational education and training for the youth in the telecommunication sector with hardware installation skills along with Huawei’s certification system which is the only certification system that covers all ICT technologies in today’s world.
Huawei believes that innovation focuses on customer needs whilst investing heavily in basic research, concentrating on technological breakthroughs that drive the world forward. In last year Huawei Sri Lanka and University of Moratuwa (UOM) entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to further enable the educated and talented youth in Sri Lanka and to enhance their skills in the ICT domain making them to be competitive in the ever-growing ICT industry. All these recent initiatives are part of Huawei’s long-term digital inclusion initiative – TECH4ALL, to support Sri Lanka to fulfil the ‘Smart Nation’ vision of the country.