Cash boost to help construction apprentices complete training

Cook Labor Government investing in building and construction apprenticeships and training opportunities as part of 2024-25 State Budget.

The Cook Government is investing $52.3 million to encourage more apprentices into good jobs in the building and construction industry and help them to complete their qualifications.

Milestone payments of $1,000 will be made available for eligible apprentices after they complete training milestones, with a range of new initiatives funded in the 2024-25 State Budget to support and grow the construction workforce and get homes built sooner.

Funded through the Construction Training Fund (CTF), the $21.2 million Apprenticeship Support Package expands on the existing successful Apprentice Completion Grant program, which has issued more than 1,000 completion payments since it was announced in 2023-24.

The first $1,000 annual milestone payments will be available for eligible apprentices to claim from 1 January 2025, with claims able to be made up to 12 months after completion. 

A $16 million boost to the Government's Apprentice Tool Allowance will mean eligible apprentices are entitled to a $1,000 rebate to help them purchase tools or safety equipment at both commencement and completion of their training.

In recognition of the costs associated with employing and training an apprentice, $26 million has been allocated through the 2024-25 State Budget to provide additional support to employers in the building and construction industry.

Eligible employers of three to four-year apprentices will receive a base grant of $15,000, up from $12,000 previously. Employers of 18 to 24-month apprentices will receive a base grant of $12,500, up from $10,000.

Bonus rates for employing a female or mature-aged apprentice or trainee will also be doubled from 20 per cent to 40 per cent, to help improve diversity in building and construction and address skills shortages by tapping into traditionally underutilised areas of the workforce.

A further $5 million has been allocated to CTF's Capital Grants Program for private registered training organisations (RTO) to upgrade facilities and equipment to expand their construction training capacity.

The State Government is also continuing its investment of $470,00 to provide regional building and construction apprentices with an increased travel and accommodation allowance to assist with transport and accommodation costs incurred if required to travel more than 70 kilometres from home as part of off-the-job training.

These initiatives build on a recent $21.5 million expansion of the Group Training Organisation Wage Subsidy Program, which offers generous subsidies for employers to help cover the average estimated award wage of full-time apprentices in the building and construction industry.

For more information: Premier/Minister Announcement - Construction Training Fund (

Comments attributed to Premier Roger Cook:

"Western Australia's nation-leading economy and enviable lifestyle are driving significant demand for housing - and my Government is doing everything we can to boost supply and get more people into homes.

"It's critical that we support local people into good jobs in the building and construction industry, and we have been working with business and training providers on the best ways to further grow this key workforce.

"Our 2024-25 State Budget will include generous new payments for construction apprentices at the beginning, middle and end of their training, providing an additional incentive for them to complete their qualifications as well as cost-of-living support as they start their careers.

"We're also providing bonuses to give apprentices the tools they need when they need them most, and support for employers to help them take on more building and construction apprentices."

Comments attributed to Treasurer Rita Saffioti:

"With huge demand for skilled workers in our building and construction industry, there's never been a better time to take up an apprenticeship in Western Australia.

"Programs and incentives like this Apprenticeship Support Package and increases to existing ones like the Government's Apprentice Tool Allowance are really important in attracting and retaining apprentices, which we know will help boost our housing supply and build more homes for Western Australians.

"We've always been a Government that prides itself on providing accessible pathways to training and education opportunities so Western Australians secure a job and provide for their family, while contributing to our State's economy. We're really proud to be funding this as part of the 2024-25 State Budget."

Comments attributed to Training and Workforce Development Minister Simone McGurk:

"The Cook Labor Government is serious about tackling the skills shortage in the construction industry, so we can get boots on the ground, and people into homes sooner.

"While overall we are seeing higher-than-average completion rates in WA, particularly in licensed trades like electrical and plumbing, individual completion rates in some trades can be as low as 50 per cent - that's why it's vital we provide incentives for apprentices to finish their training.

"We want to send a message to apprentices and employers in the building and construction industry that there is cash - and a rewarding new career - up for grabs right now.

"These bonuses and other initiatives provide an additional incentive for anyone thinking of getting into the building and construction industry to not only start, but more importantly to finish their training, so they can go on to a successful career."