ATMS Foundation commits $60m to human capital development

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Ife Ogunfuwa

The African Training and Management Services Foundation has said it has committed over $60m to human capital development in sub-Saharan Africa in the past 21 years.

A Director, ATMS Foundation, Sven Riskaer, who made this known at the African Management Services Company Business Transforming Africa Conference in Lagos, added that the private sector as well as the Small and Medium Enterprises had benefitted from the financial and training support being implemented by the AMSCO.

According to him, human capital and skills development are the keys to unlocking the huge growth potential of the African continent.

He said that the foundation’s activities in 29 African countries had resulted in the training of 2,000 people annually and over $85m paid in taxes to African governments by the companies it supported.

Riskaer said, “We have over the years observed that there is a skills gap that continues to stifle business growth in the African continent. African governments have mostly maintained prudent macro-economic policies, strengthened financial institutions and continue to undertake reforms to transform their economies structurally.

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“However, such efforts are often limited as far as human capital development for small, medium and large enterprises is concerned. African enterprises play a crucial role in the growth of the African economy and job creation. Alone in Nigeria, five to six million new job seekers join the labour market every year. However, the capacity of African enterprises to fully engage at a global level is often compromised.”

The Founder and Executive Director of Cardfiocare Medical Services Limited, Dr. Adeyemi Johnson, in his keynote address, noted that there was a strong desire by young Nigerians in the Diaspora to return home and develop the country.

He noted that those in the Diaspora had the skills set to work efficiently and develop their country but were often concerned about insecurity, income and the quality of education.

“Diasporas don’t need too many incentives to come back but they want to come back. Money is not what is driving these people, they just want to make an impact,” Johnson said.

The Managing Director, Human Resources Advisory Services, AMSCO, Wikus Van Vuuren, said that the conference was aimed at creating a debate with the public and private sectors around skills and transformation within the various African countries.

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“Training and development is critical and we must ensure that the training we provide is relevant and it makes a real practical difference to the organisations. The role of human resources as a strategic partner in businesses is really critical if we want to create sustainability,” he added.

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