3.5 Traineeships and apprenticeships
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Regarding the regulatory framework, it depends on the concrete definition of traineeship, apprenticeship or internship.
The Law on Labor Relations defines apprenticeship, while the Law on Internships fully distinguishes internships from apprenticeships.
The Apprenticeship system is regulated in the Law on Labor Relations (Закон за работни односи), in articles 56, 57, 58 and 59. These articles refer to the duration of the apprenticeship (maximum one year), performance and cancellation.
The Apprenticeship can last up to one year, unless otherwise stipulated by law. The apprenticeship may be proportionally extended if the apprentice works on a shorter working time than full-time, but for a maximum of six months.
At the end of the apprenticeship, the apprentice must take an exam, which is an integral part of the internship and is taken before the expiry of the internship. For the duration of the internship, the employer must not cancel the employment contract to the apprentice, except in case of an employer’s termination procedure.
The Law on Internship (Закон за практиканство) regulates the procedure and conditions for realising an internship, the rights and obligations of the intern and the employer where the internship is carried out, the internship contract and the record of the internship. In accordance with the Law on Internships in North Macedonia itself, differentiates the term internship with volunteering activity and trial work in accordance with the Law on Labor Relations, as well as training and retraining in accordance with the Law on Employment and insurance in case of unemployment. The term "Internship" is further defined as a limited period of time that one person is spending as an intern at the chosen employer.
It is noteworthy to mention that according to the Quality Charter on Internships and Apprenticeships conducted by the Youth Educational Forum (YJF), the term “internship” and “traineeship” does not differentiate one from another.
The traineeship is included in the Employment strategies and programs as a measure for increasing the employability of young people.
In the Operational Plan for Active Programs and Measures for Employment and Services in the Labour Market for 2023, the section 3 (training) aims to improve the skills and qualifications of unemployed persons for their more successful integration into the labour market. The measure aims to cover 172 unemployed persons registered in ESA of which 150 financed through ESA - sub-account for active programs and employment measures 22 through AVRSM – IPA II fourth direct grant.
According to the Operational Plan, the following trainings are foreseen:
-Job placement for a known employer, -Training for professional qualifications according to employers' request,
-On-line professional training according to the employer's request,
- Training for development of skills through training for increasing the employability of returnees from abroad,
- Training for in-demand occupations,
- Training for demanding occupations and training for C and D driver licence.
The trainings are intended for all unemployed persons registered at the Employment Service Agency as active job seekers. There are some exceptions in the target group for some of the training such as a minimum of primary education and unemployment up to 34 years of age with a minimum of primary education.
In the 2023 Operational Plan on Active Labor Market Programs and Measures, chapter 5 is dedicated for internships/traineeships, and this exact measure aims to cover 1600 unemployed young people up to 29 years of age with at least completed secondary education - persons already registered in ESA, of which 300 persons will be supported by IPA-IV direct grant. Persons who will conduct an internship will receive a monthly allowance in the amount of 11,000 MKD denars per month (including insurance for disability and physical damage caused by injury at work and occupational disease and personal income tax) for a period of up to 3 months.
The trainees provide reports to the ESA and the provider of traineeship. In terms of apprenticeship, the apprentice must pass an exam before the end of the apprenticeship. However, not all providers keep sound record books on traineeships or apprenticeships.
According to the active labour market programs and measures, the providers are not obliged to co-fund the trainee. The amount that the trainees receive is around 150 EUR, including personal tax income and sickness and workplace injury insurance (this amount is paid by the ESA).
The funding for traineeship is provided with the budget of the Ministry of Labor and Social Policy, within the Action Plan for Youth Employment (and operational annual plans).
According to the Operational Plan for Active Labor Market Programs and Measures 2023 (Оперативен план за активни програми и мерки за вработување и услуги на пазарот на трудот за 2023 година)
On-the-job training is aiming to cover 1.992 people with a total budget of 125.957.170. In comparison with the previous 2022 year, the total projected budget for the realisation of the training was 68.171.373 MKD with enrollment of 1303 unemployed. Compared to the year of 2021, the budget was 101.362.300 MKD with enrollment of 1282 unemployed people.
The budget for 2023 is evidently the highest in comparison with the budget for the 2022 year.
Monitoring and quality assurance for a student's apprenticeship is the responsibility of the institution (private or state) in which the apprenticeship is performed. It is usually regulated by internal documents and no specific qualitative outcomes are available.
No specific qualitative outcomes are available.