New apprenticeship scheme outlined

The Prime Minister has again backed the idea to increase the number of apprenticeships across the UK, and has committed to creating three million jobs by 2020.

He has been vocal in his thoughts on apprenticeships and how they can help UK businesses,

“The greatest asset any employer has is their workforce,” the Prime Minister said.

“And by investing in them, they are investing in the success and future of their business.”

A consultation group has been created to discuss the idea of an apprenticeships levy, and how it would be paid.

The skills minister Nick Boles feels that increasing apprenticeships is a positive step forward,

“Skilled people are the lifeblood of a strong economy, but for too long UK businesses have invested too little in developing their employees’ skills to meet the demands of a competitive, global market.”

The British Chamber of Commerce have also welcomed the news saying,

“Apprenticeship schemes can play a part in meeting important ambitions to boost skills and drive-up productivity,”

Not everyone is as positive about the proposal, Terry Scouler from EEF, the manufactures’ organisation remains sceptical about the lack of detail in the proposal and the unrealistic expectations of job creation,

“With little detail of the level of the levy, who will be required to pay it and how much government will give back in return, manufacturers have a right to remain sceptical that the levy will create the three million additional quality apprenticeships that we all wish to see”.

While the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) are worried that the proposal focuses far too much on larger businesses, and will not help SMEs recruit the skilled apprentices they need,

“With an apprenticeship levy for larger employers set to be introduced following the Budget, the CBI is concerned that while it may fund more apprenticeships to meet the Government’s target of three million, it will not deliver the high-quality, business-relevant training needed, and do little to help small or medium-sized businesses”.

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