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Northern Iraq: opening of training centre for drywall construction

News from 2019-11-12 / DEG

After years of war, the people of Iraq are still far from living a normal life: it will take years to reconstruct the destroyed infrastructure. At the same time there is a lack of up-to-date expertise and a shortage of well-trained skilled labour in the construction sector.

The German building materials company Knauf has just opened a training centre for drywall construction in the northern Iraq city of Erbil. DEG is co-financing the centre from funds of the develoPPP.de programme of the Federal Ministry for Economic Development and Cooperation (BMZ).

At the training centre Knauf teaches theoretical and practical knowledge in the technique of drywall construction. The modules are aimed at young people with no training as well as students, construction workers, architects and instructors. The aim is to train 1,200 people within two years and to create nearly 120 jobs directly and indirectly. “It is particularly worth noting that a large number of the trainees come from Syria. Our training courses open up better job prospects to people in Iraq or potentially in the rebuilding process in their own country”, explained Dr. Alexander Schütz, CEO of Knauf Engineering.

The training centre in Erbil forms part of a large-scale training offensive by Knauf, DEG and BMZ. DEG is contributing EUR 2.3 million in the initial phase, which involves a total of nine training centres in six countries. Knauf is investing another EUR 2.8 million.

Jointly with DEG, training centres have already been opened in countries that include Algeria, Georgia, Ghana, Iraq (Baghdad), Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. Tens of thousands of craftsmen have been trained in recent years, thus improving their chances on the local labour market. Many of them have in turn set up their own businesses and created additional jobs.


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