Article - Securing of Skilled Labour



The Delegation of German Industry and Commerce in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the bilateral chamber in Croatia held the conference “Wir gestalten Berufsbildung #gemeinsam” (We design vocational training #together) in Sarajevo on 5 February 2019 and in Zagreb on 7 February 2019, and presented the AHK vocational training award for the first time at their traditional New Year reception. The prize was inaugurated as part of the ‘Skills Experts’ programme funded by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy. The goal is to recognise programmes and initiatives which are characterised by a high level of ‘duality’ –
i.e. the combination of theoretical and practical learning – and present them to a wider audience. The following points are assessed: duality, innovation, quality, social purpose and sustainability.

Out of 31 joint applications by companies and vocational schools from the whole of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the jury selected four prize-winners. Two first places went to Mann+Hummel BA d.d. Tešanj together with the Mješovita srednja škola Tešanj and to MS&Wood d.d. Fojnica together with the Srednja mješovita škola ‘Zijah Dizdarević’ Fojnica.

The first AHK vocational training award in Croatia went to HAIX Obuća d.o.o, a manufacturer of functional footwear, and the Čakovec business school. Second place was shared by Kostwein proizvodnja strojeva d.o.o. / Varaždin mechanical engineering and transport school, and Harburg-Freudenberger Belišće / Osijek mechanical engineering school.

Participants of the 'Skills Experts' Conference 2019

Participants of the 'Skills Experts' Conference 2019

© BMWi/Anja Blumentritt

On 2 October 2019, at a conference (in German) (PDF, 203 KB) jointly organised by the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy and the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry, a large audience of policymakers and entrepreneurs was informed of the 'Skills Experts' and their activities as well as the vocational training services offered by the bilateral chambers of commerce for companies and interested partners. The Cologne Institute for Economic Research presented the initial results (in German) (PDF, 724 KB) of a company survey conducted in connection with the study 'Ensuring a skilled workforce in German companies abroad'.

The sites of German companies abroad show a high level of demand for skilled workers. It appears that the importance of vocational training for those sites will increase even further, with three quarters of all companies indicating that they wish to invest more in education in the future. The support services offered by the bilateral chambers of commerce are a key motivator for companies to train their workforce locally. This is reflected in the fact that over half of all companies currently active in vocational training indicate that support from the chambers motivates them in their training activities. Almost three quarters of those companies planning to get involved in vocational training cite the chambers’ support services as the major reason for launching training programmes.

The 'Skills Experts' programme has proved to be an adequate and dependable tool to enable commerce-related dual vocational training for companies abroad. It will therefore be continued in its tried and tested format. As a next step, Chile will be the first country in Latin America to join the programme.