Western Australia Minister for Training and Workforce Development Peter Collier
State Budget 2010-11: Addressing Skills And Workforce Needs For The Future
Victor P Taffa
The Liberal-National Government will strengthen its focus on creating a skilled workforce and addressing emerging labour requirements.
There has been $19.4 Million allocated over two years (2009-10 and 2010-11), allowing the State Government to provide an additional 7,600 training places in industry priority areas, including apprenticeships and traineeships.
These additional places, combined with the National Partnership Agreement on Productivity Places Program, will set training levels to 156,000 in 2011, an increase of 22,000 places on 2008 figures.
Training and Workforce Development Minister Peter Collier said this would help address the emerging need for more skilled workers to meet industry demand.
“The increased training will assist industry development in Western Australia by providing additional skilled labour, in line with State Workforce Development priorities.” Mr. Collier said.
“The development of the WA workforce to meet the needs of industry is a key priority of the Government.”
“It is important that WA takes urgent action to prepare for the future demand for labour, in particular from the resources sector, by training students in identified skill shortage areas.”
Allocated funds of $3 Million over 2010-11 and 2011-12 would provide a range of incentives for employers to take on apprentices and higher skilled trainees. This is in addition to incentives already provided.
Building on the State’s participation and workforce development needs, West Australians can continue to benefit from a significant package of programs implemented through the $47.4 Million plan, Training WA, such as:
- Course fee exemptions for eligible unemployed people;
- Rebates on workers’ compensation premiums for employers of apprentices and trainees at Certificate III level and above;
- Improved Career Development Services and Employment Directions Network, ensuring greater access to professional careers advice and training information is available;
- Course fee concessions for Recognition of Prior Learning;
- Additional Foundation Skills Qualifications to help people gain necessary skills as a pathway to further VET training and employment;
- Development of a Critical Support Unit to co-ordinate and respond to the needs of businesses, employers and employees affected by the downturn in the global economy.
The Minister said the Government had already introduced several initiatives to transform the State’s training system and create a skilled workforce for the future.
- Creating a department dedicated to training and workforce development;
- Boosting employment and training opportunities for Aboriginal people through the ‘Training together-working together’ initiative;
- Launching the creation of WA’s Workforce Development Plan to drive co-ordination of future skills and labour needs;
- Opening the Aboriginal Workforce Development Centre to boost indigenous people’s participation in the workforce;
- Establish a Skilled Migration WA – a new unit within the Department of Training and Workforce Development as part of a whole-of-government approach to developing WA’s workforce;
- Establish a partnership with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA and Chamber of Minerals and Energy to develop the WA Skilled Migration Strategy;
- Skilled migration strategy partnership/centre;
- Providing public colleges with more autonomy to become Centres of Excellence.