Labour has announced reforms to the Apprenticeship Levy to create 320,000 new climate apprenticeships in its first term in government.
Britain is facing a severe skills shortage, particularly in higher technical skills. Businesses are concerned that this will only worsen with automation and the need to respond to climate change.
The global green economy is currently valued at $4 trillion and is expected to grow to $9 trillion by 2030. Climate Apprenticeships will upskill the UK workforce so UK companies can compete in the new economy.
Businesses will benefit from an average of 80,000 people being trained per year. Apprenticeships will be available in renewable energy and transport, sustainable construction, low carbon industries and sustainable agriculture. Climate Apprenticeships will be available to both new starters and those wanting to retrain.
The programme will be funded by diverting 25 per cent of the funds employers already set aside through the Apprenticeship Levy and by any dividends over the cap paid into Labour’s Inclusive Ownership Funds, an estimated £700 million by 2024.
This programme is just part of a package of reforms to the apprenticeship scheme. Labour will also:
- Allow Apprenticeship Levy funds to be redeemed for a wider range of accredited training.
- Extend the period of time allowed for employers to spend their levy.
- Increase the amount of money businesses are allowed to transfer to non-levy paying small and medium-sized businesses.
Jeremy Corbyn, Leader of the Labour Party, said:
“Labour’s Green Industrial Revolution will be a central motor of the party’s plans to transform our country and economy, using public investment to create good, clean jobs, tackle the climate emergency and rebuild held-back towns, cities and communities.
“Climate Apprenticeships will offer training to school leavers and workers looking to change jobs mid-career, creating the engineers, technicians and construction workers we need to transition to a green economy.”
To be the first to read Labour’s plans for a Green Industrial Revolution in the 2019 manifesto, sign up here: labour.org.uk/manifesto-2019/