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BQA gives approval for training institute to boost local textile sector

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2016-05-13 15:30:00 – Africa

The Botswana Qualifications Authority (BQA) has approved the establishment of a training institution called Textile and Clothing Institute of Botswana (TCIB) the first of its kind in the country which will give a boost the local clothing and textile sector as shortage of skill has had a negative impact on the field for many years.

Shahid Ghafoor, president of the Botswana Textile and Clothing Association, said that TCIB was offering one-year certificate courses in clothing manufacturing in a wide variety of skills.

Their faculty and staff will be dedicated to providing candidates with face-to-face teaching, hands-on learning and workforce development to ensure their country has an educated, skilled population and competitive workforce.

Ghafoor, who is also the managing director of Western Apparels, said that the institution, with an area of 1,000 square metres, is located at the Gaborone West Industrial. It aims to be a renowned training and technical service provider to cater for the growth and needs of the textile and clothing industry.

The building block consists of administration part that has the admissions division, inquiries and fees centre. There is also the learning part with five classrooms that accommodate 30 students each as well as a workshop.

Their mission is to facilitate sustainable development of the regional and local textile and clothing industry by nurturing a competent workforce with specialized skills.

The courses, known as certificate in clothing manufacture, will have three levels that cover cutting, embroidery, design and pattern making, garment assembly, sewing, commercial sewing skills and mechanics.

All the programmes are designed by clothing industry professionals to up-skill candidates with knowledge for them to thrive in the textile and clothing industry.

Preparations for the official opening are at an advanced stage. The institution has already started recruitment for personnel that would be working at the faculty. The final preparations include the printing of a brochure and the launching of a website that is expected next week.

The establishment of the training centre was motivated by shortage of skilled manpower. Getting skilled manpower is a big challenge for the local textile industry also it can end up exporting to the U.S through African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).

The establishment of TCIB and the recent extension of AGOA will offer opportunities for local clothing manufacturers to export their products. The training will also help to sustain the employment of many skilled workers who are presently lacking.

AGOA is a unilateral trade arrangement by the U.S for African countries to penetrate the U.S market duty-free.

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