CAMBODIA’S hospitality workforce is expected to be elevated even higher with the establishment of the new Thalias Assessment Centre for Food Production in Phnom Penh last Thursday.
The Centre, made possible through collaboration between Thalias Co Ltd, ASSIST Mekong and the National Committee for Tourism Professionals (NCTP) of the Ministry of Tourism, aims to create the context and structure for recognising and awarding professional certification for hospitality skills.
In accordance with the Ministry of Tourism’s strategic goals for Tourism Human Resources Development 2017-2025, the TA Centre wishes to ensure that Cambodia’s ever-expanding hospitality workforce is composed of skilled professionals. It also aspires to see that at least 50% of tourism professionals are certified by 2020 and the same for all by 2030.
Thalias CEO Arnaud Darc said the initiative is an important step for fostering and promoting the skills and professionalism that Cambodia needs to complement the warmth and grace of its already famous welcome.
“These tourism professionals are at the frontline of Cambodia’s relationship with the world. I believe this initiative will create a ‘rising tide’ of competence and confidence that will benefit all stakeholders of the industry, whether they are hospitality service providers, training schools or, indeed, our growing number of guests and tourists.”
The TA Centre will also assess 100 food production professionals under a Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) which leads to the award of a certificate of competencies or qualification designed in accordance with the national and ASEAN Qualification Frameworks.
Finally, the centre will register them with the ASEAN Tourism Professionals Registration System (ATPRS), a mutual recognition arrangement on tourism professionals which aims to facilitate the mobility of tourism professionals within ASEAN, based on a competency-based certification system.
Currently, the centre operates out of Topaz Restaurant on Norodom Boulevard, where the team consists of NCTP members, local food production trainers and assessors, and technical experts from the William Angliss Institute. The initial goal is to train 20 trainers and 40 assessors in food production.
From this initially small pool of trainers and assessors, the programme aims to create a wave of new talents which can in turn train yet more trainers and assessors across the country, creating an exponential rise in skills development, recognition and professionalisation.
At the inauguration ceremony, some 200 industry players and guests were present to witness the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between all three partners.
The event was inaugurated by Minister of Tourism and President of the NCTP H.E. Dr Thong Khon.