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Welcome extension to Support for Adult Australian Apprentices

Ai Group welcomes the announcement by the Minister for Skills and Vocational Education, Senator Michaelia Cash, that the Support for Adult Australian Apprentices Payments will be extended to employers who take on an eligible apprentice aged 21 to 24 years from 1 July 2019. Eligible employers will receive a one-off payment of $4,000.

"The apprentice demographic is changing, with young people taking gap years and trying different options before making career decisions later in life. This announcement recognises that change and ensures that young people and their employers aren't penalised because of it," Ai Group Chief Executive, Innes Willox, said today.

"These incentives had previously restricted eligibility to mature aged apprentices aged 25 years and older, even though adult wages apply to new apprentices from the age of 21. This had created a barrier to employment for potential apprentices aged 21-24 and a disincentive for prospective employers.

"Given that this announcement clearly recognises the value in extending this program we would urge the government to make the changes to the apprentice program effective immediately rather than wait till 1 July next year.

"Ai Group has long been vocal on issues in the apprenticeship system that affect our members. We have been lobbying the Commonwealth Government to remove this barrier and it is very positive to see that the Government is listening," Mr Willox said.

Media enquiries: Tony Melville – 0419 190 347