$18.34 million package to build defence manufacturing workforce

$18.34 million package to build defence manufacturing workforce

The WA Government has announced an $18 million package to build a pipeline of skilled workers in Western Australia to attract defence maritime projects to the State.

This workforce investment will help provide the skilled workers needed to support upcoming WA defence projects and secure future defence work, expected to be valued at up to $75 billion nationally over the next decade.

The package includes $8.5 million for an additional $20,000 incentive, on top of existing financial subsidies, for shipbuilding employers to take on in-demand apprentices in readiness for a pipeline of future work.

The WA Government has also allocated $2.85 million to deliver 335 additional apprenticeship commencements in nominated defence trades in 2020-21 to achieve 200 apprenticeship completions by 2024-25.

A further $3.3 million will be provided to create new TAFE short courses to support Western Australians to upskill and become ‘defence ready’.

The package includes $800,000 to create two new scholarship programs to encourage women and Defence veterans to take up a career in the defence manufacturing industry.

The program will be co-funded between the State Government and industry, with each party contributing $5,000 per scholarship. It will create 20 scholarship opportunities per year for both women and Defence veterans.

Equipment will be upgraded at South Metropolitan TAFE, to assist with training students in defence-related industries.

Four new computer numeric control milling and lathe machines will be purchased to train metal fitters and machinists, with workshops customised to accommodate the new machines.

As part of the package, a dedicated defence industry team will be established at Rockingham Jobs and Skills Centre to undertake careers promotion across all schools and provide advice to job-seekers and potential workers.

A maritime defence industries toolkit will also be developed to provide practical advice for job-seekers and a dedicated ‘Jobs in Defence’ webpage and advertising campaign will be launched to continue to attract more Western Australians to WA’s defence manufacturing industry.

For further information about the defence initiatives, visit the Jobs and Skills WA website at https://www.jobsandskills.wa.gov.au/skillsready/defence or contact the Rockingham Jobs and Skills Centre on (08) 9599 8655 or rockinghamjsc@smtafe.wa.edu.au

Source: WA Government