has launched a call for proposals to develop training programmes oriented to the digital industry and aimed at young people enrolled in the National youth guarantee system. The aim of the call is to develop high level digital skills for ICT professionals in all industry sectors, supporting access into jobs that boost the digital transformation of companies. is a public enterprise of the Ministry of Energy, Tourism and Digital Agenda, whose role is to promote the development of the information society in Spain. This initiative is part of the Spanish digital agenda strategy, which has 106 lines of action structured around six axes, the sixth being to promote digital inclusion and literacy and the training of new ICT professionals.

The scheme is endowed with EUR 20 million to subsidise training programmes, with a commitment to hire a minimum of 30% of the trainees for at least six months. Training may include topics such as big data, cybersecurity, cloud computing, innovation methodologies, e-commerce, programming in web and mobile technologies, and digital content. Non-profit organisations and companies with experience in developing training and employment projects on ICT and the digital economy are eligible for grants.

The private sector is developing different initiatives to equip young people with in-demand digital skills. The Digital employment scheme (Empleo Digital) is an initiative of the Telefónica Foundation aimed at unemployed young people aged 18-35. It offers free training, face-to-face and online, in technologies most needed in the labour market: web development with Java, Liferay or PHP, development of mobile applications, programming of video games, and big data. Many companies are engaged in this initiative, supporting students undergoing training and offering recruitment possibilities and paid internships.

Digital skills are a key factor for socioeconomic development and employability. They are vital to participating in the digital economy and society, with digital transformation structurally changing the labour market, the nature of work and even how we live and communicate.

In the digital economy and society index (DESI), Spain is weak on the demand side, with low levels of digital skills and internet use; only 54% of Spaniards have basic digital skills. However, it is, strong in the use of digital technologies and in digital public services, the area where Spain performs best.

Europe also lacks sufficient digitally skilled labour to fill job vacancies, despite high unemployment rates. There may be a deficiency of up to 500 000 information and communication technology (ICT) professionals in 2020.