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China-funded tech challenge aims to nurture talents for Africa's industrialization

2019-08-03

Chinese firm AVIC International has launched in Kenya the latest edition of the Africa Tech Challenge (ATC), which aims to help nurture Africa's talents for the continent's industrialization drive. AVIC International plans to roll out the contest to 54 African countries in the long run.

NAIROBI, Aug. 2 (Xinhua) -- The 6th edition of the Africa Tech Challenge (ATC) funded by Chinese firm AVIC International has been launched in Kenya, which aims to help nurture Africa's talents for the continent's industrialization drive.

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Kevit Desai, Principal Secretary of the Ministry of Education's State Department of Vocational and Technical Education (TVET), addresses participants during the launch of the Africa Tech Challenge, Season 5 in Nairobi, capital of Kenya, July 26, 2018. (Xinhua/Charles Onyango)

Kevit Desai, principal secretary of the State Department of Vocational and Technical Training in the Ministry of Education, told reporters in Nairobi that the regional youth competition seeks to promote skills development and catalyze Africa's industrial transformation.
This year's Africa Tech Challenge brings together teams from Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Gabon, Ghana, Cote d'Ivoire and Zambia, in Kenya to offer training in mechanical engineering and lathe machining, and winners will be awarded cash prizes as well as a manufacturing contract.
Desai said that the initiative will help to deliver high standards of material production and development that is central to improve industrial competitiveness.
He observed that ATC provides an opportunity for African nations to work with China, which is one of the most industrialized countries in the world.
The government official said that the contest which began in 2014 was initially undertaken in Kenya and has since been rolled out in other African countries.
He noted that the Chinese-funded skills program will go a long way in mentoring young graduates from technical and vocational education and training (TVET) colleges to become role models for others to emulate while creating employment opportunities for the youth in the world markets of manufacturing.
According to the education ministry, the project is expected to support and offer assistance to the students currently studying technical disciplines to give them a chance to pioneer the country towards embracing technical skills and creating self-employment.
"In my view, this contest will meet its objectives of training Kenyans and equipping them with productive skills for their development and of meeting the national development goals," Desai said.
Zhao Leilei from AVIC International, who is program manager of ATC, noted that the long-term goal of AVIC International is to roll out the contest to 54 countries in Africa.
Zhao said that ATC is the corporate social responsibility program under the ongoing Kenya-C


Next: Feature: China helps African youth drive industrial transformation

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