Proposed 2017/2018 budget training levy
The Proposed 2017/2018 Budget by the federal government to introduce a training levy for employers wishing to sponsor overseas workers under the new TSS visa has serious cost implications for dealers who look abroad for hard-to-find skilled vehicle technicians.
Businesses with turnover of more than $10 million a year, which would encompass every car dealer in the country, will soon be required to make an upfront payment of $1800 per visa per year for each employee on a TSS visa, and an additional one-off payment of $5000 for each employee being sponsored for a permanent visa.
Currently, over 1700 mechanics are working in Australia from other countries, with an estimated shortage of 7300 skilled technicians across the Australian automotive industry.
Under the new arrangements, keeping these 1700 mechanics working in Australia could cost $17 million over four years, and larger dealer groups could be up for $500,000 over four years just in TSS Training Levy fees alone.
Solving the entire estimated shortage of 7300 skilled technicians across the Australian automotive industry via the TSS scheme would, on the figures outlined above, cost dealers $73 million.
There is little doubt these statistics demonstrate that there remains a distinct shortage of motor mechanics in Australia. A lack of investment in previous years for Australian apprenticeship programmes has certainly contributed to insufficient locally trained tradespersons. Most Australian automotive dealers are now training Australians, and have their apprenticeship programs in place. Accordingly, the proposed training levy penalises these employers whereby they will now be paying not only for their apprentices but contributing to a training levy also.
Surely the proposed training levy should be applied only to those employers who aren’t contributing towards the training of Australians?
Don’t wait to oppose this blatant double dipping by the Federal government with the 2017-2018 proposed budget.
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