The number of new apprentices in regional and rural areas will double with an extra $60 million in new funding for the Australian Apprenticeship Wage Subsidy trial, Member for Wide Bay Llew O’Brien announced today.

The new investment by the Morrison Government will double the number of new apprentices supported through the program from around 1,600 to around 3,200 across regional Australia.

Mr O’Brien said the investment will help more young Australians living in Wide Bay into training and a rewarding career.

“Our government is committed to growing regional communities like Wide Bay, and this will help both small businesses looking to take on staff as well as people looking to start their career,” Mr O’Brien said.

“Regional Australia produces more than 30 per cent of Australia’s GDP,  and we aim to keep this success story going through highly trained and skilled staff in the regions.

“It will help give our young Australians an opportunity to keep enjoying the great lifestyle in regional areas while they pursue their training and career.”

The trial is already supporting around 1,600 new apprentices across many regional industries including apprentice plumbers, mechanics, electricians, painters and hairdressers – all learning valuable skills and gaining experience.

“This expansion of the trial will lower the cost of doing business for small businesses in rural and regional Australia and helps more young Australians start their careers through an apprenticeship,” Mr O’Brien said.

“By strengthening the economy, we are able to make investments like this to benefit small business and younger Australians living in regional Australia.”