KOTA TINGGI: The country’s first technical and vocational skills training hub is set to be built here.

A memorandum of agreement to build Skills Johor was signed between YPJ Plantations Sdn Bhd and Intact Corporate Approach Sdn Bhd.

It was witnessed by Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Mohamed Khaled Nordin.

The hub will be built over 40ha in the district of Kota Tinggi with the RM107mil project expected to act as a catalyst for surrounding areas.

The state government will have a 20% stake in the joint venture to operate Skills Johor as well as gain income from the leasing the land for the hub.

Skills Johor will complement the existing academic hubs located in Educity, Iskandar and Pagoh by meeting the acute needs for competent, certified and skilled talents.

We expect the first phase of the skills hub to be ready and operational in two years’ time.

The hub will be able to accommodate up to 20,000 Malaysian as well as international trainees a year when it is fully completed.

One of the key success factors for a thriving vocational skills training hub is the creation of a healthy collaborative network between the training providers and the industries,said Intact Corporate Approach director Omar Shariff Mydeen.

It is not enough to just recruit students for the purposes of training & certification per se. The industry ecosystem is vital to the success and sustainability of this project,he added.

The collaboration with Skills Federation of Malaysian Accredited JPK Centres (FeMAC) was sealed with the signing of a Memorandum of Agreement with the hub’s operating entity, Johor International Skills Hub Sdn Bhd

Under this agreement, FeMAC will identify and provide vocational training programmes with the necessary certification at the hub.

We will work closely with our partners in five focus areas, namely oil and gas, hospitality and tourism, healthcare, biotechnology as well as logistics,” said FeMAC president P. Sailanathan.

Skills Johor and their strategic partners will establish a collaborative framework with international vocational skills providers from countries such as Britain, Australia, Germany, Japan and South Korea in curriculum design, training and certification.