To counter the challenge of shortage of skilled toolmakers, the City of Tshwane has partnered with the National Tooling Initiative Programme towards training the Tshwane youth in toolmaking. There was a festive mood when 74 students received their toolmaking certificates at Hammanskraal on 8 May 2017 during the Faranani Awards Ceremony.
The training partnership was necessitated by the demand for the training of toolmakers to support growth and sustainability in the manufacturing sector. The main objective in the implementation and operation of the Tshwane Tooling Academy is to provide sufficient human capital to support Tshwane's manufacturing sector.
"South Africa has lost about 80% of its toolmakers and die makers over the past 25 years. This has resulted in a shortage of 5 000 toolmakers, which is hampering the manufacturing sector by limiting production to a R3 billion-a-year sector when it has the potential capacity to grow bigger. Most of the South African toolmakers have emigrated, retired, changed jobs or are in the process of exiting the industry. It is estimated that less than 20% of tooling demands are met locally, forcing the manufacturing sector to import tooling and maintenance support services from Germany and China, hence the partnership," said the MMC for Economic Development, Cllr Randall Williams, during the certification ceremony.
This initiative will contribute towards improving the comparative advantage and the competitiveness of the manufacturing sector in the economy of Tshwane and South Africa. It will also contribute towards addressing development challenges in Tshwane, such as poverty, unemployment and underdevelopment.