Over the past 15 years, Ethiopia has been among the fastest growing countries in the world at an average of 10 percent per year (World Bank, 2021). However, the economic growth has not been job rich and the labour market has not been able to absorb the new labour force entrants entering the labour market. Consequently, the urban unemployment rate is high, in which the youth and female are the most affected. There seem to be a mismatch between the labour market demand and supply in terms of skills and knowledge of the new graduates. Unemployment is one of the main driving force for youth to look for work beyond the local labour market (ILO, 2020).
In the given socio-economic context, if Ethiopia becomes a middle-income country by 2025 as stated in the Growth and Transformation Plans (GTP II 2015–2020), its economy will have to become more diversified, therefore having strong implications for the education and training system.
Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) is a key pillar of the Government´s efforts to strengthen the education and training system. The Ethiopian National Employment Policy and Strategy highlights the importance of improving the quality of general education and TVET to reduce the number of working poor. Moreover, Ethiopia’s latest TVET strategy focuses on:
- Improving access to TVET;
- Strengthening outcome-based training through an integrated, yet decentralized, and result-oriented system;
- Improving quality assurance and skills assessment;
- Improving the quality and relevance of training programmes;
- Strengthening the employment of TVET graduates;
- Intensifying support to micro and small enterprises (MSEs).