Boost for small business & apprentices

Boost for small business & apprentices

OCTOBER 31, 2018: The Morrison Government will invest $60 million to trial a wage subsidy as an incentive for employers in regional and rural communities to engage more apprentices.

This means eligible employers across the region will be able to receive payments based on the apprentice’s relevant award wage rates.

Subsidies will be provided at 75 per cent of the apprentice’s award wage in the first year, followed with 50 per cent in the second year and 25 per cent in the third year. 

The new scheme will be trialed from January 1, 2019 under the Australian Apprenticeships Incentives Program (AAIP), and it will support eligible new Australian apprentices in areas such as plumbing, mechanical, electrical, painting trades and hairdressing.

This investment is part of the Morrison Government’s commitment to maintain a strong vocational education and training (VET) sector that delivers the quality skilled workforce our community needs.

Minister for Small and Family Business, Skills and Vocational Education Senator Michaelia Cash said the trial would see up to 1,630 new Australian Apprentices in areas of skills needs.

“There are 3.3 million Australian small businesses which contribute around $395 billion annually to our economy. Small business plays a vital role in our community, from giving young Australians their first real job to supporting our local charities and sporting organisations,” Minister Cash said.

“Through this incentive we are securing the skills our regional and rural businesses need to remain competitive and give local students new opportunities at home.”

Deputy Prime Minister, Nationals’ Leader and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the incentive will provide a much-needed boost to communities throughout regional and rural Australia.

“It’s an incentive that I’m confident will encourage businesses and employers to engage a new apprentice and turbo-charge someone’s future career,” Mr McCormack said.

“This investment from the Morrison Government is just another practical step to help create jobs and opportunities for small businesses and young people in the regions.

“A VET qualification is every bit as important to the economy as a university degree.”

The new wage subsidy will complement other incentives currently available through the AAIP and support the engagement of eligible new full-time apprentices at the Certificate III and IV levels in occupations on the National Skills Needs List in regional and rural communities.

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