BIMP-EAGA TVET Network – Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) leaders and stakeholders from the Brunei Darussalam Indonesia Malaysia the Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) headed by TESDA XI Regional Director and Head of the BIMP-EAGA Socio-Cultural and Education Cluster Gaspar Gayona (3rd from right), Mindanao Development Authority Secretary and Philippine Signing Minister for BIMP-EAGA Luwalhati Antonino (center), and TESDA Deputy Director Rosanna Urdaneta (3rd from left) pose for a group photo during the 1st BIMP-EAGA TVET Forum held at TESDA XI Regional Training Center from July 18 to 19, 2016.

DAVAO CITY – A network of Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) providers and institutions in the Brunei Darussalam Indonesia Malaysia the Philippines East ASEAN Growth Area (BIMP-EAGA) will be developed to harmonize TVET initiatives within the sub-region.

The move is one of the agreements during the recently concluded 1st BIMP-EAGA TVET forum, which gathered more than 100 TVET sector representatives from the sub-region. Industry stakeholders have also agreed to develop a directory of TVET institutions and providers within EAGA that will help facilitate in the creation of the network.

"It has been our vision for EAGA's TVET sector to have a clear and united direction for developing the sub-region's skilled workers, and the creation of this network will serve as an effective platform in achieving that goal," said Secretary Luwalhati Antonino, chair of the Mindanao Development Authority.

One of the key functions of the network is to develop enabling policies and mechanics that will result to mutually recognized Technical Education and Skills Development (TESD) programs and certifications among the member-countries of the sub-region.

Antonino, who is also the Philippine signing minister for EAGA added, "the creation of the TVET network within the sub-region will also facilitate for the achievement of our other goal, which is to adopt incubation centers as BIMP-EAGA Centers of Excellence.

An incubation center is a facility that provides specialized training on specific TVET skills. Incubations centers that have developed their own set of best practices, as well as conducted sufficient research and technical support for a focused area of expertise will eventually become BIMP-EAGA's Centers of Excellence by following a set of standards and guidelines that will be agreed among TVET stakeholders within the sub-region.

The Technical Education and Skills Development Authority's (TESDA) Regional Training Center – Korea-Philippines Vocational Training Center (RTC-KPVTC) here in this city is identified as one of the institutions poised to become BIMP-EAGA's Center of Excellence in agri modernization. Other EAGA member-countries will identify their respective centers.

"The creation of the network is just the start of a synergistic interaction with our fellow TVET leaders and providers across the sub-region, and we hope to see more EAGA TVET programs and projects develop from this network," said TESDA XI Regional Director Gaspar Gayona.

He added that following the creation of the network, TVET industry players are expecting more benchmark visits to possible EAGA centers of excellence by administrators, faculty, and students.

"This network will also facilitate for more exchange programs that can be participated in by both trainers and students," said Gayona.

The TESDA XI is the Philippine lead focal agency for the BIMP-EAGA Socio-Cultural and Education Cluster, formed in 2014 to promote "people-centered" initiatives that will focus on socio-cultural and education exchanges and cooperation.

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