MTAA Media Release - Government smacks Automotive Sector again

The Automotive Sector, already dealing with the closure of automobile manufacturing and unprecedented structural adjustment across all sector industries, have now had future qualifications, training and skills requirements handed over to a profit-making consulting firm.

The Motor Trades Association of Australia (MTAA) says the decision of the Federal Government to award one of the top four consulting firms a tender to provide a Skills Service Organisation (SSO), as part of new Vocational Education Training (VET) arrangements, was ill advised, disappointing in the extreme and high risk.

MTAA and State and Territory Motor Trades Association and Automobile Chamber of Commerce members strongly support the underlying principle that VET is industry-led. Consistent with this principle, the automotive, mining, drilling and associated industries had provided a viable, practical, industry led solution, which has been completely disregarded by government.

It is galling that a for-profit consultancy firm, funded by Australian taxpayers to perform VET tasks integral to the automotive sector, will potentially gain the intelligence and knowledge it needs to assist in performing those tasks from sector and industry participants.

MTAA Members are now seeking instructions from thousands of employers who invest significantly in training and skills, but who already have significant concerns and suspicion with the VET system evidenced by a significant drop in apprenticeships. Armed with this input, MTAA and Members will meet early next week and consider future involvement in the VET system.

Unfortunately, today’s decision illustrates a continuing lack of understanding or commitment to dealing with the significant issues confronting the automotive sector and the more than 360,000 Australians employed by it. This is evidenced by the lack of any formal government response to the recommendations from a 12 month long Senate Inquiry, 12 months after the final report was tabled.

Richard Dudley, CEO MTAA Limited 0412146828

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