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Regional Scheme for Skills Certification in Latin America and the Caribbean.

GCM Objectives

GCM Guiding Principles*

*All practices are to uphold the ten guiding principles of the GCM. This practice particularly exemplifies these listed principles.

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Dates

2021 - 2023

Type of practice

Policy (including law, public measure)

Summary

ILO and its Inter-American Centre for Knowledge Development in Vocational Training (CINTERFOR) have been working closely with Vocational Training Institutions (VTIs) and Ministries of Labour of Quito Process countries on the creation of a regional scheme for skills certification. Quito Process countries are the Latin American and Caribbean countries that host Venezuelan refugees and migrants. ILO had published in November 2020 the study “Report on the attention provided to the refugee and migrant workers in Vocational Training Institutions”, which has guided ILO’s work on this topic in 2021.

Since June 2021, ILO and CINTERFOR have been liaising with VTIs to gather information, compile good practices, and offer recommendations on how these institutions can ease their Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) processes and develop skills recognition and certification programmes for Venezuelan refugee and migrant workers. The participants of this initiative were: Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Security (MTEySS – Argentina), National System Commission for the Certification of Labour Competencies (ChileValora – Chile), SENA (Colombia), National Learning Institute (INA – Costa Rica), Ministry of Labour (MDT – Ecuador), National Institute of Vocational Training for Human Development (INADEH – Panama) and Ministry of Labour and Promotion of Employment (MTPE – Peru). The Regional Scheme for Skills Certification is based on verification questions that function as checkpoints that can be used as reference for the certification and RPL processes in the region. When countries have completed the processes established by the Regional Scheme, it means that they are ready to start bi or multilateral agreements for automatic skills certification among countries. The Regional Scheme is the first step of a longer process that aims at the creation of a Regional Qualifications Framework (RQF) in LAC, which ILO is supporting jointly with UNESCO and OAS.

Collaborators

Main Implementer

International Labour Organization (ILO)

Other Organizations

International Labour Organization – Inter-American Centre for Knowledge Development in Vocational Training (ILO/Cinterfor)

Benefit and Impact

The Regional Scheme will enable migrant workers and Venezuelan refugees to access labour markets in line with their skills and experience, facilitating decent and formal work. It has enabled internal discussions in the VTIs so that they can work towards more standardized processes of skills recognition and certification. Additionally, the work carried by ILO and CINTERFOR has identified potential bilateral partnerships that can take place before an RQF is agreed upon, mainly between Colombia and Ecuador, and Colombia and Panama. These bilateral agreements would aim at cross-country automatic recognition or a fast-track certification procedures for refugees and migrants who have had their skills previously certified from another country that adheres to such agreement. ILO/CINTERFOR have also identified the possibility of assisting countries to create a “skills passport” that speeds up the certification procedures.

The next steps in this project include the expansion to other countries, a follow-up process regarding how and if countries are adopting the steps established in the scheme towards standardised RPL processes, negotiations for the creation of a “skills passport”, and monitoring and assistance to the establishment of bi and/or multilateral agreements.

Key Lessons

A regional skills certification scheme for Venezuelans is easier to achieve in the shorter period. However, it is essential to create long-lasting mechanisms to evaluate the application of recommendations for simplification of RPL processes and to support VTIs in the monitoring of foreign graduates from their professional training programmes.

A Regional Qualifications Framework, on the other hand, is a more complex initiative that needs the involvement of other governmental institutions, such as the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The Regional Scheme for Skills Certification is a viable initiative when countries still need to standardise their certification programmes, as it requires less resources and it can be achieved by involving fewer stakeholders, such as the VTIs and the Ministries of Labour.

Recommendations(if the practice is to be replicated)

Keep all stakeholders involved and hold frequent meetings with all relevant actors, as any slight disagreement on how the skills certification scheme should function can prevent the project from advancing.

The regional certification scheme should be flexible enough for governments to be able to adapt it to their own contexts. Each country has a different level of development when it comes to a qualifications’ framework. Therefore, any functioning scheme must respect such diversity.

Innovation

This project supports the first effort in LAC to create a Regional Certification Scheme. Additionally, this initiative catalysed the creation of referral mechanisms between PES and VTIs to better integrate the services offered to local, refugee and migrant workers, which has already been negotiated in Colombia. Finally, this practice is scalable because its final goal is to include all VTIs and Ministries of Labour of the region in the scheme, which will improve skills recognition and prevent social dumping across the region.

Date submitted:

04 April 2022

Disclaimer: The content of this practice reflects the views of the implementers and does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations, the United Nations Network on Migration, and its members.

 

 

Regional Scheme for Skills Certification in Latin America and the Caribbean.

GCM Objectives

Dates:

2021 - 2023

Type of practice:

Policy (including law, public measure)

Summary

ILO and its Inter-American Centre for Knowledge Development in Vocational Training (CINTERFOR) have been working closely with Vocational Training Institutions (VTIs) and Ministries of Labour of Quito Process countries on the creation of a regional scheme for skills certification. Quito Process countries are the Latin American and Caribbean countries that host Venezuelan refugees and migrants. ILO had published in November 2020 the study “Report on the attention provided to the refugee and migrant workers in Vocational Training Institutions”, which has guided ILO’s work on this topic in 2021.

Since June 2021, ILO and CINTERFOR have been liaising with VTIs to gather information, compile good practices, and offer recommendations on how these institutions can ease their Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) processes and develop skills recognition and certification programmes for Venezuelan refugee and migrant workers. The participants of this initiative were: Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Security (MTEySS – Argentina), National System Commission for the Certification of Labour Competencies (ChileValora – Chile), SENA (Colombia), National Learning Institute (INA – Costa Rica), Ministry of Labour (MDT – Ecuador), National Institute of Vocational Training for Human Development (INADEH – Panama) and Ministry of Labour and Promotion of Employment (MTPE – Peru). The Regional Scheme for Skills Certification is based on verification questions that function as checkpoints that can be used as reference for the certification and RPL processes in the region. When countries have completed the processes established by the Regional Scheme, it means that they are ready to start bi or multilateral agreements for automatic skills certification among countries. The Regional Scheme is the first step of a longer process that aims at the creation of a Regional Qualifications Framework (RQF) in LAC, which ILO is supporting jointly with UNESCO and OAS.

Collaborators

Main Implementer:

International Labour Organization (ILO)

Other Organizations:

International Labour Organization – Inter-American Centre for Knowledge Development in Vocational Training (ILO/Cinterfor)

Benefit and Impact

The Regional Scheme will enable migrant workers and Venezuelan refugees to access labour markets in line with their skills and experience, facilitating decent and formal work. It has enabled internal discussions in the VTIs so that they can work towards more standardized processes of skills recognition and certification. Additionally, the work carried by ILO and CINTERFOR has identified potential bilateral partnerships that can take place before an RQF is agreed upon, mainly between Colombia and Ecuador, and Colombia and Panama. These bilateral agreements would aim at cross-country automatic recognition or a fast-track certification procedures for refugees and migrants who have had their skills previously certified from another country that adheres to such agreement. ILO/CINTERFOR have also identified the possibility of assisting countries to create a “skills passport” that speeds up the certification procedures.

The next steps in this project include the expansion to other countries, a follow-up process regarding how and if countries are adopting the steps established in the scheme towards standardised RPL processes, negotiations for the creation of a “skills passport”, and monitoring and assistance to the establishment of bi and/or multilateral agreements.

Key Lessons

A regional skills certification scheme for Venezuelans is easier to achieve in the shorter period. However, it is essential to create long-lasting mechanisms to evaluate the application of recommendations for simplification of RPL processes and to support VTIs in the monitoring of foreign graduates from their professional training programmes.

A Regional Qualifications Framework, on the other hand, is a more complex initiative that needs the involvement of other governmental institutions, such as the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The Regional Scheme for Skills Certification is a viable initiative when countries still need to standardise their certification programmes, as it requires less resources and it can be achieved by involving fewer stakeholders, such as the VTIs and the Ministries of Labour.

Recommendations(if the practice is to be replicated)

Keep all stakeholders involved and hold frequent meetings with all relevant actors, as any slight disagreement on how the skills certification scheme should function can prevent the project from advancing.

The regional certification scheme should be flexible enough for governments to be able to adapt it to their own contexts. Each country has a different level of development when it comes to a qualifications’ framework. Therefore, any functioning scheme must respect such diversity.

GCM Guiding Principles*

*All practices are to uphold the ten guiding principles of the GCM. This practice particularly exemplifies these listed principles.

Innovation

This project supports the first effort in LAC to create a Regional Certification Scheme. Additionally, this initiative catalysed the creation of referral mechanisms between PES and VTIs to better integrate the services offered to local, refugee and migrant workers, which has already been negotiated in Colombia. Finally, this practice is scalable because its final goal is to include all VTIs and Ministries of Labour of the region in the scheme, which will improve skills recognition and prevent social dumping across the region.

Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Date submitted:

04 April 2022

Disclaimer: The content of this practice reflects the views of the implementers and does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations, the United Nations Network on Migration, and its members.

 

 

*References to Kosovo shall be understood to be in the context of United Nations Security Council resolution 1244 (1999).