Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) member economies, especially developing economies like the Philippines, should promote vocational education, Pacific Economic Cooperation Council (PECC) secretary general Eduardo Pedrosa said on Monday.
In developed countries, improvement in the education system has resulted in 5-percent growth.
Improving the education system can translate in an increase of USD 3,000 per person, Pedrosa said after he presented the PECC survey to the media.
PECC is an international non-profit organization that observes APEC.
More vocational courses for students and training programs for employees would address the job mismatch whereby graduates have different skills sets that employers need.
“Jobs change and the labor market is changing so quickly,” Pedrosa said.
“It is less about specific skills but the ability to learn more skills that will help (those looking for jobs),” he said.
Some jobs do not require a bachelor’s degree, but more vocational skills, Pedrosa said.
The jobs mismatch can also be addressed with more cooperation between the business community that employs people and the education sectors that trains them, he said.
Cooperation, he added, might be in terms of coming up with education and training programs for potential employees that will fit the qualifications employers are looking for.
Germany, which has an exemplary vocational training system, and Singapore have linked up their chambers of commerce and business federation with universities to come up with new courses in line with job trends, Pedrosa said.
The Philippines can do this for the service sector, he said.