TENOM: The KPD-OISCA Youth Training Center is sponsoring 15 of its graduates to continue their studies for one to three years in Japan to produce skilled workers in the field of agriculture to deal with food security issues in Sabah.
Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Dr Jeffrey G Kitingan said the advanced studies sponsored by OISCA Japan International involved 10 existing students in Japan while three left last February and two more this March.
“The need for skilled labor in agriculture is very important when self-sufficiency in rice and meat production is still at 23 percent and is projected to increase to 60 percent in 2030,” he said.
Dr Jeffrey who is also the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food Industry said this when officiating the Convocation Ceremony of the KPD-OISCA Youth Training Center in Lagud Seberang on Thursday.
According to him, agricultural technology in Japan is very advanced and it is hoped that the opportunity to continue agricultural studies in that country can be utilized as best as possible to bring agricultural knowledge back to Sabah for mutual benefit.
He said, so far there are three graduates of the course, currently working as instructors at the Japan OISCA training centers.
In the convocation of the 16-month course at the training center, 54 graduates received certificates to become agricultural entrepreneurs or skilled workers in the agricultural industry.
“Some of the graduates were selected to continue their studies at the OISCA International Center in Japan and some became teaching staff in Sabah and Japan,” he said.
The course, which includes 20 percent theory and 80 percent practical, is recognized by the Malaysian Skills Certificate (SKM) under the National Occupation Skill Standard (NOSS) curriculum.
Among the skills learned are mushroom cultivation, food processing, rice production, poultry farming and crop production.