Double boost to shipbuilding workforce


The federal government is backing two new measures to boost the naval shipbuilding workforce.

Minister for defence industry Melissa Price announced a $5 million Naval Shipbuilding Training and Upskilling program to assist workers displaced by the Covid-19 pandemic move into naval shipbuilding.

And the government has awarded 40 new scholarships to students from the Queensland University of Technology and the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology.

News of the scholarships under the National Naval Shipbuilding Pipeline Scholarship program came as Perth shipbuilder Austal delivered its ninth Guardian class patrol boat to the Defence Department.

The future HMPNGS Rochus Lokinap (pictured) was gifted to the Papua New Guinea Defence Force at a ceremony held at Austal’s Henderson shipyard.

Price said the Naval Shipbuilding Training and Upskilling program would connect displaced workers with tailored case management and link potential candidates with appropriate training plans and job placements.

“Through this new program the Naval Shipbuilding College will identify cohorts of workers who have been displaced by the pandemic and provide them with the information and resources necessary to upskill and enter into this exciting sector.

“We are committed to working with the College to grow Australia’s shipbuilding workforce.

“We need 15,000 workers to carry out the government’s continuous naval shipbuilding program.”

Workers who have been adversely impacted by the pandemic can register here.

Picture: Austal/HMPNGS Rochus Lokinap

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