Marshall plan to deliver defence industry workforce

A Marshall Liberal Government will ensure South Australia has the skilled workforce required to fully capitalise on the Federal Government’s $90 billion investment in naval shipbuilding.

“A Marshall Government will develop a comprehensive Defence Workforce Plan to review the existing skills base in local industry and forecast the type of qualifications and number of workers needed during the next 20 years,” said State Liberal Leader Steven Marshall.

“The size and specialist qualifications of the shipbuilding workforce in South Australia needs to develop significantly to meet the requirements of the Federal Government’s Naval Shipbuilding Plan and reap the substantial rewards on offer for our state.

“The South Australian Government must adopt a proactive role in developing a local naval shipbuilding workforce to ensure South Australian skilled workers can meet the future demands of the defence industry.

“The Defence Workforce Plan is critical to ensure South Australia fully capitalises on this once in a generation opportunity in naval shipbuilding.”

Under the Defence Workforce Plan, a Marshall Liberal Government will:

  • Identify requisite qualifications for inclusion on the subsidised training list under the existing WorkReady scheme;
  • Support accredited Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) to provide automotive workers with formal Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) which can be used to gain new qualifications in relevant areas;
  • Fund 1,200 apprenticeships within those qualifications over the next four years; and
  • Work with the new Naval Shipbuilding College being established in Adelaide to develop and obtain accreditation for a Diploma of Naval Shipbuilding, enabling South Australians to develop skills needed to perform managerial and supervisor roles.

“The Weatherill Labor Government have more than halved apprenticeship numbers over the last five years, and are content to sit on their hands and watch a skills shortage develop,” said Mr Marshall.

“After 16 years of Labor neglect and complacency, South Australia needs strong action to take advantage of this opportunity and establish the capacity for a continuous naval shipbuilding program in our state.

“South Australia’s economic future will be significantly bolstered through naval shipbuilding and we need to maximise local employment opportunities.

“The State Liberals have a Strong Plan for Real Change to create more jobs, lower costs and provide better services.

“Only the Marshall Liberal Team will ensure that we make the most of this opportunity for all South Australians to benefit.”