The Government is building a stronger economy by supporting apprentices to successfully complete their qualification.
The legislation for Trade Support Loans has been passed by the Parliament, allowing loans of up to $20,000 over the four years of an apprenticeship.
Federal member for Page Kevin Hogan said the Government is delivering on its commitment to introduce Trade Support Loans for apprentices to encourage more young people to take up a trade and complete their qualification.
“All too often, young apprentices do not complete their training because they cannot afford the costs associated with undertaking an apprenticeship,” he said.
“These loans will ease the financial burden and help increase apprenticeship completion rates.”
Apprentices in Page will have access to $20,000 over the entire period of their training with more support provided during the initial years when it is needed most.
The Trade Support Loans will be provide support of up $8000 in the first year of the apprenticeship, $6000 in the second, $4000 in the third and $2000 in the fourth.
“Apprentices who successfully complete their training will be rewarded. When an apprentice completes their training, 20 per cent of the loan, or up to $4000, will be immediately deducted from the total of their loan,” Mr Hogan said.
“Like HELP loans for tertiary students, the loans will be repayable once apprentices are earning a sustainable income.”
Trade Support Loans will specifically target occupations on the National Skills Needs List such as plumbers, diesel mechanics, electricians and fitters, as well as priority areas in horticulture and agriculture.
“These loans will provide real support for current apprentices to complete their skills training and provide a stronger incentive for young Australians to become apprentices,” Mr Hogan said.
“Trade Support Loans will help more apprentices finish their training and get straight out into the workforce, by providing support across the entire period of their apprenticeship and providing an incentive to complete their course.”
“We want people who start a training programme to actually finish it – and realise the opportunity of working in their chosen field.
“The new Trade Support Loans are part of the Government’s Economic Action Strategy to build a strong and prosperous economy.”
For further information on the programme, contact your local Australian Apprenticeships Centre or visit www.australianapprenticeships.gov.au.