The State Government have confirmed that they will walk away from supporting trainees in Western Australia, with restrictions to the Payroll Tax Exemption passing the Western Australian Parliament last night.

Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA (CCI) Chief Executive Officer Chris Rodwell said this is a very disappointing outcome for training in WA and our workforce’s future skills. 

“CCI has advised the Government that traineeships are already in freefall as a direct result of their policy change, putting WA jobs and skills at risk and damaging the State’s long-term economic recovery,” Mr Rodwell said.

“No funding has been committed in this year’s State Budget for the Government’s proposed Grants Scheme and by their own admission, they have no detail of what it will look.

“If we want to diversify the WA economy we must also diversify our skills – this change does nothing to help that.

Workers in regional areas are 1.5 times more likely to undertake VET based training compared to metropolitan areas.

“We are particularly disappointed that The Nationals WA opted to support the Government’s legislation despite clear evidence that this will hit regional workers harder than metropolitan workers,” Mr Rodwell said.

“This change will also hit regional and remote businesses hardest when they are already being forced to pay roughly 25 per cent more than a metropolitan business to provide training.

“Regional workers will now be left wondering what the plan is for them because it’s clearly not a plan for highly skilled, well-paying jobs outside the metro area.

“CCI thanks the Liberal Party, One Nation, the Liberal Democrats and the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party for their ongoing support for training in WA and opposition to this Bill.”