Joint media release- Maritime Technical College to train thousands of future shipbuilders

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The Hon Christopher Pyne MP

Minister for Defence Industry

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Minister Pyne:  (Rory Grant) 0439 764 809,

Defence Media (02) 6127 1999,

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24 March 2017

The Turnbull Government today announced it will establish a Maritime Technical College to identify, train or retrain Australian workers for our $90 billion shipbuilding program.

The Government will invest an initial $25 million into the college which will be based in Adelaide but will deliver world class training across the country in key areas such as steel fabrication, welding and naval engineering.

Minister Pyne said this was an important step in Australia’s future naval shipbuilding industry and would help thousands of Australians obtain the jobs created as a result of the Government’s $90 billion commitment.

“The Government is ensuring long-term, secure employment for future naval shipbuilding and sustainment workers which will avoid the peaks and troughs the industry has previously experienced,” Minister Pyne said.

“By the late 2020s the naval shipbuilding industry will expand to more than 5,200 employees in construction in South Australia, and more than double this in sustainment and through the supply chain across the country.

“The Maritime Technical College is a Government investment aimed at attracting, recruiting, training and retaining the workforce we need to successfully deliver a continuous naval shipbuilding program.”

“We fully expect workers previously employed in mining and automotive industries to be retrained through this college, ready to start work on our next generation of naval vessels,” he said.

Minister Birmingham said Defence would work closely with educators and industry to deliver the Maritime Technical College.

“Defence capability is at the heart of our naval shipbuilding commitments. The importance of these capabilities has never been clearer, given the increasing security challenges Australia faces,” Minister Birmingham said.

“A national endeavour of this magnitude requires a national approach to education and training.

"The College will deliver skills in partnership with many existing universities and training providers across Australia, ensuring we capture the best training to help deliver the optimal naval shipbuilding skills for the future.

“The Maritime Technical College will commence operations in early 2018, with a focus on increasing key entry-level trade qualifications through contracted Registered Training Organisations across Australia,” he said.

Assistant Minister Andrews said, the Maritime Technical College will work to support the chosen shipbuilder’s ability to hire the workforces they will need, skilled as they need them, and will also increase the number of students undertaking higher education qualifications.

“The Maritime Technical College will provide opportunities for education providers across Australia, to collaborate across the education and training spectrum to deliver high quality candidates for future employment in naval shipbuilding.

“Having the right sized workforce, with the right skills, is critical to delivering the Government’s naval shipbuilding program.

“This college is an example of the many opportunities that Vocational Education and Skills training provides to Australians,” she said.

The Maritime Technical College headquarters will be located in Adelaide and will utilise and expand on existing training courses across Australia.

A request for tender will be released in coming months. The Department of Defence is making arrangements for industry information sessions on the Maritime Technical College and its phased implementation from 2018.

Further details on these information sessions will be released in the next few weeks

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