Thursday, May 23, 2019

EU rolls out new 205 million euro education programme for Bangladesh

  • Senior Correspondent,
    Published: 2019-02-06 00:37:23 BdST


The European Union has rolled out a new €205 million programme to strengthen the education sector in Bangladesh.

ERD Secretary Monowar Ahmed and EU Head of delegation in Dhaka Ambassador Rensje Teerink signed a deal on the financing in Dhaka on Tuesday.

The 28-nation bloc said the new programme operates through a budget support modality based on sector performance indicators, with a total amount of €205 million.

Of that, €150 million will be spent on primary education, €50 million on technical and vocational education and training or TVET and €5 million will be used for complementary technical assistance.

The programme will be implemented over the next four years.

The programme titled Human Capital Development Programme 2021 (HCDP-21) confirms the EU’s continued commitment to Bangladesh for the development of education sector.

This EU-funded scheme aims to provide Bangladesh's young population with improved quality education and training, the head of the EU delegation in Dhaka said.

“It will promote the implementation of long-term sustainable Education policies towards a lifelong learning approach, bringing together primary education and TVET.”

Overall, HCDP-21 supports Bangladesh to progress towards the achievement of the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals, in particular Goal 4 on quality education.

Secretary Monowar said the government acknowledges the longstanding support of the EU in a sector as crucial as education.

“We are looking forward to further strengthening our solid partnership with one of our key donors in Bangladesh and together making an important contribution to reaching the SDGs by 2030,” he added.

Ambassador Teerink said with “a working population anticipated to increase by 21 million people over the next decade, continued investment in quality primary education and establishment of a sustainable TVET system is critical to enhance employment opportunities, to use the potential of the demographic dividend and contribute significantly to inclusive growth and poverty reduction.

“The EU contribution is meant to support Education policy improvements and system strengthening with a specific focus on primary education and TVET,” she said.

The EU acknowledged that Bangladesh has made “commendable” progress over the past decades in human development, including in the education sector, with near universal access to primary education and gender equity at the primary and secondary education levels.

“Basic education and a skilled and capable workforce are a precondition for inclusive growth, key for Bangladesh to become a middle-income country,” Teerink added.