The federal government has made a budget commitment with an aim is to reduce youth unemployment during the pandemic. Business groups have welcomed the announcement, but there are concerns over the long-term plan to support younger workers.
The federal government says the $1.2 billion package which will be announced in tonight's budget will help create 100,000 jobs.
The National Australian Apprenticeships Association and the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry have welcomed the initiative, saying it will help young people seeking their first full-time job during the pandemic.
But Australian Industry Group Chief Executive, Innes Willox says there needs to be more support for employers to create more long-term sustainable jobs, using employment, education and training.
In March, the federal government announced $1.3 billion for existing apprenticeship arrangements.
It has set aside $500 million for 2020-21 for its JobTrainer package to help young trainees learn skills through short courses.
Funding contributions are expected to be matched by contributions from state and territory governments.
Jessie Ahern from CTR Pacific Commercial Bricklaying says many businesses in the construction industry are doing it tough.
When you are sort of considering whether or not take on an apprentice, it really is a 3-4 year commitment. And you want to make sure that you can afford to pay for that apprentice because at first they're fresh on the job. They don't know what they're doing. They have sort of lower productivity. So it is really a commitment from the employer to cover the costs of having an apprentice. So where you have got a subsidy to help cover those costs, it is exactly the sort of policy that we really support.
Australia is set to forecast a record deficit of about A$200 billion, as the country experiences its first recession in 29 years, after posting a 7 percent fall in the June quarter GDP.
The think tank, the Australia Institute, has released new research showing between seven and 12-fold more jobs would be created by putting money into the healthcare and education sectors, compared to bringing forward income tax cuts.
The institute's senior economist Matt Grudnoff says up to 162,000 jobs could be created.
To hear the full interview, please click on the audio player above.
People in Australia must stay at least 1.5 meters away from others. Find out what restrictions are in place for your state or territory.
Testing for coronavirus is now widely available across Australia. If you are experiencing cold or flu symptoms, arrange a test by calling your doctor or contact the Coronavirus Health Information Hotline on 1800 020 080.
The federal government's coronavirus tracing app COVIDSafe is available for download from your phone's app store.
SBS is committed to informing Australia’s diverse communities about the latest COVID-19 developments.
News and information is available in 63 languages at https://www.sbs.com.au/language/coronavirus