SA Premier promises $27m for job growth

SA Premier Jay Weatherill has announced that Thursday’s budget will offer an extra $27 million over two years for the state’s Skills for all program.

As adelaidenow reports, the extra money will target job growth in sectors such as advanced manufacturing, mining, and food production.

The announcement was made in Elizabeth, where Ford will cease its car manufacturing operations in 2016.

Making the announcement, Weatherill said, "We have to change more quickly than the world around is changing and the way to do that is with skills.

"There are growing jobs but the challenge is matching up the skills of the workforce so that they can meet those jobs."

The announcement was welcomed by business leaders with the proviso that the program needs to be well targeted and that business needs to be given tax incentives to assist in taking on trainees and apprentices.

BusinessSA chief executive Nigel McBride told The Advertiser, "One of the concerns we have had with Skills for All was a lot of people doing Certificate I in, say hairdressing, with no jobs to go to….It's great to see additional funding and that it's targeted.

"The one thing missing in the package is … payroll tax exemptions for apprentices and trainees.

"We've got to create jobs for people who are trained and a big part of that is the payroll tax exemption."

Opposition Leader Steven Marshall said that, while he welcomed the funding, SA’s economy was going backwards.

"It's really incumbent on the Government to get this right, otherwise we are just going to lose a whole generation of young people from this state," he said.

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