Defence industry trainees get $100m boost – Crikey


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Prime Minister Scott Morrison says his government will help train an additional 1500 workers for the nation’s defence industry under a $108.5 million election promise. 

Mr Morrison, who will be in Perth on Friday, will announce the expansion of the Defence Industry Pathways Program, which will upskill additional teenagers graduating or leaving school in 14 regions across the country. 

The students will receive a nationally accredited Certificate III – Defence Industry Pathways, and will be trained with practical experience in trades, as well as skills in engineering, project management and logistics, and cyber security. 

Mr Morrison said his government’s $270 billion investment in Australia’s defence capabilities this decade included a “strong pipeline of workers” in local industry. 

“Our investment in building the capabilities of Australia’s defence force is about keeping our country strong and secure and backing local skills and jobs,” he said. 

“The skills and knowledge this program will give to graduates will set them up for a career in defence equipment manufacturing technology, and set them up for life.”

Defence Industry Minister Melissa Price said more than 50 businesses have registered to mentor the 120 trainees participating in the pilot at Henderson in Western Australia.  

“We need to meet the growing needs of our defence industry workforce by skilling up new workers and new generations,” she said. 

“By training an extra 1500 workers with on-the-job experience we know these graduates will be ready to walk into the workplace.”

Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese will campaign in Sydney, with Labor launching a new attack on the government’s handling of the economy. 

The advertisement will target low wage growth and the surging cost of living.

“Scott Morrison doesn’t hold a hose, but he should have held a calculator,” the TV ad says.  

“The millions of taxpayer dollars he wasted on sports rorts and car parks really added up. 

“He doubled our debt even before COVID and letting massively profitable companies keep JobKeeper payments is one of the reasons our debt is now triple. 

“He says he’s good with money, but that really doesn’t add up.”

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