Australian Resources and Energy Group AMMA welcomes the announcement of a program to help boost the skills needed by industry.

Under a Skills Organisations Pilot announced by the Federal Government, trainees and apprentices will be taught skills that better match the needs of employers in the mining industry.

The Pilot will ensure trainees and apprentices, particularly those in remote areas, are part of a growing workforce to support the mining industry, as well as the broader Australian economy.

The initiative is part of the Government’s announcement earlier this year of a $585 million Delivering skills for today and tomorrow package aimed at strengthening Australia’s vocational education and training system.

Through the package, the Government committed to establishing two Skills Organisation Pilots in the priority industries of human services care and digital technologies, and is now adding the mining sector to the initiative.

The Pilots give the target industries the opportunity to shape the national training system to be more responsive to their particular skills needs, and to ensure that employers have confidence in the quality of VET graduates.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison says the Pilot, co-funded by the Coalition Government and the Mineral Councils of Australia, will ensure more Australians are able to get a highly-skilled job, particularly kids in remote areas.

“I want these kids to come out of training college with the skills they need to go land a job in the mining industry,” the Prime Minister said.

The announcement is another vote of confidence in the high-skill, high-wage mining industry.

Minister for Resources and Northern Australia Matt Canavan said it was critical for Australia to have a well-trained mining workforce to take full advantage of booming demand for our world class commodities.

“Our resources sector is one of the powerhouses of our economy but it can’t happen without the talented people who make it up,” Minister Canavan said.

“Our high quality and clean resources have never been in higher demand and now is the time to invest in our resources sector skills base.

“More than a million Australians work in the resources sector – that’s about one in every 10 jobs. Investing in the skills of these workers is an investment in Australian families and communities.

“Creating a nationwide curriculum under this Pilot will help enhance, expand and advance the skills of our resources workers, securing the sector’s future for decades to come.

“I am especially enthused to get more kids excited about what’s under the ground. The technologies to explore our underground are just as technical as those that launch us into space. Australia leads the world in exploration and young Australians don’t need to play Minecraft to dig, they can do it right here in their backyard.”

Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash, said the industry is committed to ensuring the availability of high-quality training and strong employment pathways for learners.