Piloting Phase: Transition from Learning to Earning and Jobs retention

The proposed piloting phase aims at addressing the quality and relevance of skills development. At the same time, it addresses the huge unemployment problem in South Africa which is estimated to further increase due to the COVID-19 pandemic by working on the demand side of skills development and support businesses to secure jobs.

Country/region Period Budget
South Africa
01.08.2020 - 31.05.2022
CHF  1’610’000

South Africa still faces substantial challenges inherited from a system of exclusion and segregation. The education system in South Africa is very complex and requires actions to further improve its quality and relevance. Low economic growth, high inequality and unemployment rates are the major impediments to improving the economy and the livelihood of its citizens. The unemployment rate climbed to 29.1% in February 2020 – its highest rate in 16 years with youth unemployment standing at over 50%. There is a mismatch between the skills produced by training institutions and the skills demanded by the economy.


The piloting phase is part of an ongoing program, the Skills Development for Green Economy II (2018-2022), and aims to complement this program by working mainly on the demand side of skills development, i.e. with the private sector. Its overall objective is to improve the quality of technical vocational education and training and skills development in South Africa regarding its labour market relevance. Success of the impact will be measured by:

a) improved assessment of the quality of the education system in the Global Competitiveness Index

b) 70% of participating vocational education training staff apply new management and training methods

c) 75% completion rate for the apprentices

d) 66% of company take-over rate for training graduates

Medium-term outcomes

The project outcome is to improve the cooperation between actors from vocational education and training institutions and the private sector in dual training measures. The outcome will be measured by:

66% of trained graduates being in employment

2860 apprentices enrolled

75% of the 1250 participants of short-term courses rate their training as "very important" for the development of their skills

70% of the 350 companies involved in the project rate the demand-oriented training measures as "very good" or "comprehensive"

increase by six times in number of companies participating in the implementation


Expected results:  

Unlock opportunities for the training and employment of young people in artisanal enterprises (referring to manufacturing jobs, mainly installation, repair and maintenance) by achieving:

30% of 300 participants in dual training courses are profiled and matched to employment and earning opportunities

50 companies benefitting from strengthened business competences have access to new markets and clients

Directorate/federal office responsible SECO
Credit area Development cooperation
Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    1’610’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    0 Budget inclusive project partner CHF    15’750’000
Project phases Phase 2 01.06.2022 - 31.05.2025   (Current phase)

Phase 1 01.08.2020 - 31.05.2022   (Active)