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ITF Response to Budget

Response to Budget
28 May 2009

The Government’s Budget flies in the face of its own statements recognising the importance of industry training to helping the country through the recession, the Industry Training Federation said today.

“Less than three months ago, we attended the Prime Minister’s Job Summit where he stated that he was keen to determine what could be done to keep up or increase levels of industry training during this recession,” Executive Director Jeremy Baker said today.

“Today the government formally responded by in effect cutting funding to industry training while passing on significant increases in funding to polytechnics and universities whose qualifications cost the taxpayer around three times as much as the industry training sector and often contain only a tenuous link to the country’s economic and social needs. This is achieved by taking away inflation-adjusted increases for industry training, while leaving them in place for tertiary education providers.

“We are appalled that the Government has chosen to make the inequities in funding between the sectors even greater than they already are.

“In a recession, this is even stranger than ever, as it is now that the government should be carefully considering what is good value for money. The industry training sector provides training and skill development that is closely linked to what industry and workplaces need to survive and improve levels of productivity.

“Funding is tight, we all know that. What we don’t understand is why the government has chosen to use the little increase available for the tertiary education and training sector in such a bizarre way,” Mr Baker concluded.


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