Niti Aayog Wednesday suggested a roadmap to increase the proportion of formally skilled labour from the current 5.4 per cent of India's workforce to at least 15 per cent to realise the country's rich demographic dividend.
The Aayog released 'Strategy for New India @75', which defines clear objectives for 2022-23 in a detailed exposition of 41 crucial areas and suggests the way forward to transform India.
The government think tank also recommended setting up of an Overseas Employment Promotion Agency under the Ministry of External Affairs.
"Apart from working with the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship to train and certify Indian workers keen on overseas employment, in line with international standards, it could also support pre-departure orientation training (PDOT), including language and soft skills training modules," the Niti Aayog said.
It recommended that to build the capacity and infrastructure for skilling existing and new entrants to the labour force, the country requires main-streaming skill development with education through a system for academic equivalence to ITI's qualifications, which would provide candidates from industrial training institutes (ITIs) the option to attain academic qualification as well.
It suggested that the National Skill Development Corporation may enter into partnerships with private job counselling agencies for helping newly skilled persons with soft skills and adapting to local conditions.
Besides, the Aayog called for alternative financing sources such as Corporate Social Responsibility funds, Compensatory, Afforestation Fund Management and Planning Authority funds, Building and Construction Workers' Cess, Members of Parliament Local Area Development Fund, Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA), etc, to be tapped to expand the skill programme.
It also advocated developing internationally compliant National Occupation Standards (NOS) and the Qualification Packs (QP) that define a job role and making all training compliant with the National Skills Qualification Framework.
The Aayog recommended that skill development plans and strategies should be developed by geography and sector for mapping the availability of infrastructure and on the basis of assessing skill requirements both at the national and state levels.
(With inputs from agencies.)