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Labour pledges minimum of 100,000 apprenticeships

apprenticeTHE NEXT Welsh Labour Government will create a minimum 100,000 high quality apprenticeships over the next Assembly term. The apprenticeships will have an all age focus with targeted interventions, to encourage more young people aged between 16-18 to go on to high quality apprenticeships.

Welsh Labour want to see more apprentices earning and learning in the work place where they will best acquire the necessary skills and learn at a faster pace.

The pledge will build on the huge success of Jobs Growth Wales which has helped 15,000 young people into quality employment. However apprenticeships need to change to react to the ever changing needs of the Welsh Economy that will need higher skill levels, particularly in STEM areas, to compete in the global race.

The focus will be on working in partnership with employers so they can harness the benefits that apprentices can bring to their business. In c o n j u n c t i o n with the three regional skills p a r t n e r s h i p s , Welsh Labour will support the creation of apprenticeships in areas of greatest need, to the regional economies of Wales. Making sure Wales has the skills to meet the demand of major infrastructure projects such as Wylfa or the South Wales Metro.

Over the last Assembly term the Welsh Labour Government established a strong record of supporting individuals with high quality skills training. The apprenticeships programme in Wales is already one of the most successful in Europe. Success rates are consistently over 80 per cent considerably higher than in England where success rates are around 70 percent.

Many industry insiders have welcomed the pledge, saying that it gives Wales a maintainable supply of apprentices as well providing the levels of funding required.

Julie James Deputy Minister for Skills and Technology said told The Herald:“Wales needs to meet the challenges of the 21st Century, ensuring that we have the skills base, to compete globally. Our pledge will help equip Welsh businesses to do exactly this. Working in partnership with employers helping them benefit from the skills and enthusiasm of the next generation of apprentices.”

“I am proud that Wales has one of the best records in Europe, with regards to apprenticeships and proud of the work this Welsh Labour Government has already done to create thousands of highly skilled apprenticeships.”

“This pledge is the next step to ensuring that we have the skills base that projects like Wylfa Newydd and the South Wales Metro, will demand. That is why so many voices within industry are so enthusiastic about this pledge.”

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Jon Coles

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