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Govt steps-in to assist SA defence industry growth

South Australia’s defence industry will garner some much-needed assistance from the State Government to help its competitiveness and expansion, according to a report from the Workforce Information Service.

The State Government’s initiative, called the Defence Industry Workforce Action Plan, is designed to assist South Australia’s defence industry secure a competitive and productive workforce to support future expansion.

Employment, Training and Further Education minister Michael O’Brien said a key objective of the Action Plan is to establish a clear future direction for the industry.

“The Rann Government has secured around $44 billion worth of defence projects over the past five years, and we’re committed to increasing the number of defence jobs in South Australia to 28,000 by 2014,” he said.

“Significant new defence projects are driving industry growth, including the $8 billion Air Warfare Destroyer contract and the multi billion dollar Collins class submarine assembly contract.

‘If we’re to build on our reputation as the nation’s ‘Defence State’, it’s critical we also build a high-skill, high-tech and adaptable workforce.”

The plan has four key strategies: develop and sustain industry leadership and engagement in workforce planning and skills development; improve the industry’s ability to attract and recruit a highly skilled workforce; assist the defence industry to retain an adaptable and diverse workforce; and develop and promote industry-led pathways from school to VET and/or higher education.

The Defence Teaming Centre will drive the plan’s implementation, to be monitored by a reference group comprising industry and government representatives.

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