Young professionals and skills development: A French offer

On October 6 2015, Ambassador of France to South Africa, Elisabeth Barbier, attended a round table discussion about promotion of young professionals in South Africa – hosted by the External Trade Advisors in South Africa, the French Trade Commission Business France and the French Embassy.

The French International Internship Programme (Volontariat International en Entreprises - VIE) programme allows young professionals to work for a French company in South Africa up to two years with the support of the French government.


France is investing in the youth of South Africa through the provision of bursaries, scholarships etc. Once qualified, these young professionals have skills that create opportunities for them and impact French and South African economies in a positive way.

During the event, attended by representatives of the South African government, presentations addressed the different training programmes that French companies can benefit from to employ young South African graduates/employees.


The VIE Programme contributes to train young graduates in international businesses. The programme is therefore aimed at French subsidiaries in South Africa which benefits from recruiting a VIE. By hiring a VIE, French companies contribute to creating a new generation of young professionals – French and South African.

In South Africa there are currently 63 VIEs working in 50 French companies. Ambassador Barbier said: “These figures are positive, but we can do better if we take into account the 350 French companies operating in South Africa”.

Download Ambassador Barbier’s opening remarks here.

Meet some of the VIEs who attended the event:

Jonathan Monard, 28, has been working as a VIE for Systra since February 2015.

Charlotte Talamini, 28, has been working as a VIE for Sanofi Pasteur for more than a year. JPEG

Meet some of those who benefited from scholarships and busaries:

Clyde Lamble, who now teaches at Unilever, benefited from a scholarship to do a Master’s degree in International Commerce in France from 2011 to 2013.

Nonjabulo Zondi completed a 2-year Master’s degree at Sciences Po in Paris.

publie le 07/10/2015

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