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On Thursday, 15 November the Delegation of the European Union to Georgia and the Government of Georgia highlighted the achievement of four years of cooperation to reform the employment and education system in Georgia.
Opening the event, Carl Hartzell, Ambassador of the European Union, remarked, "Employment is a key concern for people everywhere, in Georgia as well as in Europe. Vocational education provides the shortest road to finding a job, provided that the requirements of labour market and jobseekers' skills are in line. For the past four years employment and vocational education have been a priority for the Government and the EU, and we now see our joint efforts starting to bear fruit. We will continue to support Georgia in reforming skills development with a large programme to be signed in Brussels next week."
Official keynote speeches were furthermore held by Irina Abuladze, Deputy Minister of Education, Science, Culture and Sport, Tamar Barkalaia, Deputy Minister of Internally Displaced Persons from Occupied Territories, Labour, Health and social Affairs of Georgia, and Levan Gogodze, Deputy Director of the Social Service Agency. These were followed by remarks given by Georgian entrepreneurs, such as Zviad Tsikolia and Valeri Chekheria. In addition, representatives of the EU's Technical Assistance project "EUVEGE" as well as the involved ministries discussed the main achievements of EU-Georgia cooperation in the field of employment and vocational education over the past four years.
One of the main challenges in overcoming unemployment is the mismatch between available skills and the needs of the labour market. With EU support, the Government has managed to modernise the vocational education and training system through:
In addition the EU worked with four civil society partners to pilot innovative solutions to tackling employment challenges for people with disabilities, people living in remote areas, and for developing agri- and family businesses to demonstrate that with the right support, everyone can be employable. Besides presenting new models of employment support, the projects found jobs for 100 jobseekers, supported over 240 small businesses and trained over 3.000 people.
In the coming years the European Union will continue to work together with the Government of Georgia to create perspectives and increase employment among citizens of Georgia. Support will focus on improving the link between education and the labour market to ensure that people with improved skills will find matching jobs.
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