Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Paul Goldsmith and Associate Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment Minister Louise Upston have welcomed the latest apprenticeship figures, which show an increase of 6800, nearly 19 per cent, since 2012.

“We now have over 43,000 New Zealanders engaged in an apprenticeship, with most of those in the construction and engineering sectors,” says Mr Goldsmith.

“We are in the middle of the New Zealand’s biggest ever building boom, the rapid scaling-up of construction in Auckland will result in around $17 billion of new construction in 2018,” says Mr Goldsmith.

The Government has invested $14.4 million in industry training as part of Budget 2016, along with a further $9.6 million for Māori and Pasifika Trades Training, over four years.

“The Government is investing to meet the skills challenge, but we need support from parents, teachers, careers advisors, and businesses if we are to meet our target of 50,000 apprentices by 2020.”

The Occupation Outlook, published by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s (MBIE), projects strong job prospects for qualified trades workers over the next few years. This is due in part to construction activity in Auckland and nationally.

“Trade apprenticeships are not just an alternative career choice for young people, they are critical for our economic growth. The Occupation Outlook is a fantastic resource for young people considering their future careers,” Ms Upston says.

“Our Government has set an ambitious target of 50,000 people to be training in apprenticeships by 2020 and we are working with industry training organisations on an action plan to achieve that.”

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