HARARE-More than 8 000 college graduates have so far registered for employment in other African countries with more still applying, a senior Government official said on Wednesday.

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The Government in June this year invited jobless college graduates to register for possible employment in several African countries. Higher Tertiary and Education, Science and Technology deputy Minister Dr Godfrey Gandawa said the response had been overwhelming and a data base was being compiled.

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“There are many applications coming in and we are compiling a database,” he said.

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“So far from what has been captured, we have so far captured a total of 8 000 applications in the system and a lot more applications are still coming. However we will determine when we will start to export them after finalizing the policy.”

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The Ministry of Higher and Tertiary Education in collaboration with that of Labour, Public Service and Social Welfare and the Civil Service Commission are working on the human export policy.

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Zimbabwe has signed agreements for exporting labour with a number of African countries as part of efforts to assist unemployed graduates while working on ways of creating employment in the country.

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Many African countries have expressed interest in recruiting college graduates from Zimbabwe with South Sudan and Namibia interested in teachers, engineers, pharmacists and administrators.

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Universities in the country churn out more than 10 000 graduates each year with thousands more coming from Polytechnics, Teachers Colleges and other institutions of higher learning.

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Zimbabwe has the highest literacy rate in Africa with its graduates highly sought after all over the world. The economic contraction fuelled by illegal sanctions that Western countries imposed on the country has seen industry failing to absorb the thousands of university and college graduates as many have downsized while others have closed shop.

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