Ford Motor Company and its dealer in Nigeria, Coscharis Motors, have once again, reiterated their commitment to investing in youth skills development in the country.
The rededication was made in celebration of World Youth Skills Day marked every year on July15 as approved by United Nations (UN) International Days of observance established by the UN General Assembly in 2014.
Noting that Africa has the world’s youngest population that is growing rapidly, both Ford and Coscharis believe that African countries, including Nigeria, need to address the rise in youth unemployment.. According to Trading Economics, approximately 25 percent of the youth in Nigeria are unemployed.
Industries such as the auto sector present an opportunity for governments to tackle youth unemployment. It’s essential that the youth are given the necessary skills to succeed in the industry to ensure competitiveness. Adequate training is the bedrock of any industry.
Coscharis Motors in partnership with the Lagos State Government has designated an automotive training centre in the revamped premises of Eko Engineering Ventures. The objective is to produce qualified staff for the local motor industry. The ultra-modern training centre was officially opened in 2012.
Ford and Coscharis Motors have donated several vehicles to the CG-Eko LLP training centre to be used for practical training. These include three Ford Ranger pick-up trucks, a Ford Everest SUV, 1.5-litre Ford Figo and a Ford EcoSport. From the years 2013 – 2017, as many as 41 technicians were trained using the donated Ford vehicles at the training centre.
Abiona Babarinde, Coscharis Group General Manager, Marketing, and Corporate Communications, says: “The role of employees in the much-changed motor industry of the 21st century – particularly technicians – means that extensive training is required as vehicles become increasingly high tech. Today’s automotive technicians are very different from the general mechanics of old. We, at the Coscharis group, are thankful that Ford believes in our mission and vision by providing practical support to our projects. We will continue to work together with Ford to develop the automotive industry in Nigeria.”