Long period analysis of construction skills supply in Zambia

The development of requisite skills in the right numbers to match the sector demands in construction within Zambia forms an essential aspect of the ability of construction companies to deliver projects efficiently. In Zambia the availability of these skills is influenced by a number of factors including the training provision which governs the supply of the skills, sector and sub-sector volume capacity which drives the demand for the skills, and other socio-cultural as well as public sector policy on skills development. The nature of the interaction between the two principal factors of demand and supply for a developing country such as Zambia is particularly relevant as these two factors are self-reinforcing and also impact on the other socio-politico cultural factors. The paper explores the interaction the two factors by examining the supply pattern of selected construction skills and how they reflect current skills needs (demand) of construction companies in Zambia. The scope of the analysis is craft-based and technician grade skills. The benefits of the analysis derives not only from the potential to identify possible skills shortfalls to inform public policy, but also highlight any change in the composition of the skills base that the supply organisations (construction sector training providers) may have to address.