Namibia lacks vocational skills

29 January 2019 | Education

Namibia has again been ranked as one of the worst-performing countries when it comes to vocational and technical skills.

The country was ranked 78th on a global index of talent competitiveness, moving up two places since last year.

In sub-Saharan Africa, Namibia was ranked sixth in terms of talent competitiveness.

The Global Talent Competitiveness Index (GTCI), produced by INSEAD Business School, benchmarks countries in terms of employment, education, immigration and a wide range of other factors.

Namibia received an overall score of 36.1 this year, slightly dropping from its previous score of 37 last year.

The 2018-2019 report, which evaluated 125 countries, aims to provide decision-makers in the private and public sectors with the tools to drive talent competitiveness.

It specifically suggests that by creating a truly diverse and inclusive corporate culture, companies can gain a competitive advantage that would enable them to not just attract and retain talent, but create a high-performing workforce.

Ranging from collaboration within organisations and foreign direct investment to the gender pay gap, labour productivity and university rankings, these variables help determine a country's 'talent competitiveness' – the ability to attract, develop and retain skilled workers, thereby supporting productivity and prosperity.

The report also explores the role of diversity as a source for innovation and prosperity in labour markets, finding that countries with greater diversity and inclusion will be best placed to achieve the performance and agility required to innovate, and remain competitive in the fast-paced and evolving global economy.

In the main categories Namibia was ranked 58th for enabling skills development, 31st for attracting skills, 80th for growing skills, 97th for retaining skills, 101th for vocational and technical training skills and 79th for global knowledge skills.

Namibia would do well to develop its vocational and technical sector, in particular with the dismal grade 10 and 12 results. For the 2018 academic year, 20 952 grade 10 learners failed, while only

9 524 learners out of 23 594 who sat for the 2018 grade 12 examination qualified for tertiary education.

It is therefore not surprising that Namibia ranked poorly for its tertiary enrolment at 103rd under the growing skills category, while under the vocational and technical skills category the country was also ranked poorly for ease of finding skilled employees at 109th.

According to the index, Namibia is the sixth best performer in sub-Saharan Africa when it comes to talent competiveness. Mauritius is the top performer in the region (globally 47th), followed by Botswana (62nd), South Africa (71st), Rwanda (73) and Namibia (78th).

Switzerland, Singapore and the USA were ranked as the top three countries globally, while Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Yemen, were ranked as the worst performers.


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