Boost to apprenticeships will aid WA in skills challenge ahead

Chris Rodwell

CCIWA CEO

The Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA (CCIWA) welcomes the Federal Government’s decision to extend and uncap the Boosting Apprenticeship Commencement (BAC) initiative today.

The 50 per cent wage subsidy will now extend to new apprenticeships and traineeships signed up by 30 September 2021. The subsidy applies for 12 months. The move reflects the strong uptake and success of the initial program, reinforcing the role of strong employer-facing support to secure a pipeline of skilled workers now and into the future. The announcement will provide more WA businesses with the support, certainty and confidence to take on an apprentice or trainee.

The Prime Minister has also signaled a renewed focus on skilling and scaling the Australian workforce, including through appropriate skilled migration, an approach that is strongly welcomed by CCIWA.

WA has a greater reliance on trade skills than other States and Territories, and the long-term decline in apprenticeship and traineeship commencements is a critical challenge for our economy and society. It is also a primary economic concern identified by respondents to CCIWA’s recent Business Confidence Survey.

Apprenticeship Support Australia Manager Lena Constantine says there has been a “phenomenal uptake” of the BAC scheme by employers. Alongside Apprenticeship Support Australia, CCIWA is helping hundreds of WA businesses and apprentices navigate this complex time. Measures that grow our skills base will mitigate worker shortages and support a stronger and more diversified economy.

 

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