The ILO, through the ILO/Korea Partnership Programme, has been providing various technical assistance activities and facilitated a series of regional and national consultation meetings to push forward the implementation of the Mutual Recognition of Skills in ASEAN. The Mutual Recognition of Skills focuses on technical and vocational skills, and the skills collectively prioritized by the participating ASEAN Member States (in this case Thailand and Cambodia) has been on bricklaying and plastering skill area. While effective MRS implementation depends on the trust and confidence that education and training institutions and employers place on the credentials and validity of qualifications that are officially issued by mandated organizations in each ASEAN Member States, there is considerable variation in national capacity, especially quality assurance mechanisms of national skills development and certification systems. As such, the Mutual Recognition of Skills Programme responds to narrowing the gap in national capacity and focuses on capacity building of institutional structures and mechanisms.
The implementation of the Mutual Recognition of Skills Programme in pandemic condition requires adaptation and a shift to virtual means in engaging and communicating with counterparts, although the comparative analysis between two countries’ skill standard is best conducted through in-person dialogue and consultation. The practicalities of communication in the pandemic have limitations and one of the lessons learned is the importance of adopting video camera discipline. As an alternative, the video documentation of the national skill standard testing and assessment processes has been initiated for both participating countries, in this case, analysis of Thailand’s Skills Standard on Bricklaying and Plastering (Level 1) with Cambodia’s Competency Standard on Masonry (Level 2).
On 27-28 October 2021, technical team from the Department of Skills Development of the Ministry of Labour and the ILO with its video production team visited the Suphanburi Skills Development Institute to capture video footage and still photos on the process of Thailand’s National Skill Standard Testing and Assessment on Bricklaying and Plastering (Level 1). As described in the official procedure, the testing and assessment comprises of two parts, theoretical and practical. The video would capture the essence of both theoretical and practical tests and include the assessment and scoring.
The video documentation will be used to support dialogue between Thailand and Cambodia which will be held on 20-22 December 2021. The dialogue will be conducted virtually and using the video documentation as audio and visual support.