WorldSkills is an international professional skills competition that is referred to also as the "Skills Olympics". In this competition young people from almost 60 countries worldwide demonstrate their skills in more than 45 professionals’ trades on the global stage. The competition is an annual event and it alternates with the professional skills competition of the European scale EuroSkills.

The beginnings of the competition date back to 1946 when Spain experienced the lack of skilled labour. Director of the Spanish Youth Organisation José Antonio Elola Olaso together with his supporters proposed the organisation of the professional skills competitions as a solution to this problem. Back in 1950 the first competition was arranged where young people from companies from all over Spain were competing for the titles of masters of trade experiencing the spirit of competition, adults held discussions on innovations and results and spectators learned about the diversity of professions and the secrets of trades.

The idea of this competition of professional skills has successfully survived up to today and grown from the national competition of Spain into a global competition.

WorldSkills competition is the attestation that both traditional and modern professions and skills are one of the basis of the global economic and social welfare. WorldSkills London 2011 will be held in London, the capital of Great Britain, from 5 to 8 October. This was the first time when Latvia participated in the prestigious competition of young professionals WorldSkills London 2011.


WorldSkills International

WorldSkills is organised by the international not for profit membership association WorldSkills International that has defined its mission as the promotion and facilitation throught cooperative action a worldwide awareness of the essential contribution that skills and high standards of competence make to the achievement of economic success and personal fulfilment.

This is a non-political and non-confessional organisation assembled by the institutions promoting the development of the vocational education from all over the world. Each country is represented in this organisation by just one institution delegated by the state; in Latvia this is the State Education Development Agency (VIAA).

Currently there are 76 member states in WorldSkills International representing all the continents of the globe. The membership of the organisation is expanding because the number of countries all over the world understanding the contribution the competition makes in the improvement of the prestige of the vocational education and the standards of skills is increasing. 

Latvia's participation in WorldSkills International

Latvia gained the entitlement to participate in the WorldSkills competition in the spring of 2011 upon joining the WorldSkills International organisation and becoming its associated member.

Thus, the following opportunities are open for Latvia:

  • the participation in the WorldSkills competitions;
  • the participation in the national competitions of other countries;
  • the delegation of experts for the participation in the Experts' discussions and development of the competition criteria;
  • gaining the international experience regarding the trends of development of the vocational education;
  • the assessment of the national skills and professional knowledge level on the global scale.

Latvia's participation and achievements in the WorldSkills and the EuroSkills competitions.


Young professionals or students of vocational education establishments entitled to participate in the competition.