During Chancellor Angela Merkel's visit to India in 2007 India's Prime Minister, Mr. Manmohan Singh, asked the German government for assistance with India's efforts to reform its vocational training system. The German-Indian Working Group on Vocational Education and Training was subsequently set up to help the Indian government with the implementation of its National Skill Development Initiative. BIBB has assumed coordinating tasks in connection with the working group. It also makes substantive contributions to individual lines of action.
Germany and India have a 50-year history of collaboration in the vocational education and training field in connection with their development cooperation activities. The new form of VET collaboration which India now seeks reflects its self-image as a country which, since the tsunami in the Indian Ocean in December 2004 at the latest, has become a donor country. In addition, it has become generally recognised that vocational training in India can no longer be organised by the government alone: Trade and industry must also help with this undertaking in the interest of ensuring that the training being provided is relevant to the labour market and employment. For this reason, the Indian government is looking with interest at Germany's 'dual' vocational training (which combines part-time vocational schooling with practical work experience) where trade and industry play a major role as employers, learning venues, examination and certification bodies and partners in shaping and organising the general conditions for vocational education and training (VET).
Within the framework of the German-Indian Working Group on Vocational Education and Training, BIBB supports the Indian government, business organisations, German enterprises and multilateral organisations through a variety of measures:
BIBB conducts or participates in, for example, workshops on the national qualifications framework, training for trainers and instruction and learning materials. BIBB also supports its partners in the working group by providing study and research services. It has additionally proposed staff exchanges with India's Ministry of Labour and develops exemplary methods -such as vocational training modules- for transferring German innovations in the vocational education and training field.