The Building and Construction Industry Training Organisation (BCITO) said that demand for construction in New Zealand caused an increase in apprentices to 11,000 people, the first time that it has happened in the country.
Aside from this, there were 43,000 Kiwis that signed up for apprenticeship programmes, mostly coming from the construction and engineering industries, according to Louise Upston, Associate Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment minister.
The increasing demand bodes well for suppliers of construction equipment such as a temporary fence for hire in Wellington one can get from firms such as Superfence or excavators in Auckland.
The apprenticeship milestone reflects a stable economy and more job opportunities for graduates and those planning to establish a career in a different field, Upston said. She added that by 2020, the country aims to have 50,000 apprentices with the help of businesses among other private-sector groups.
As the “biggest ever” building boom takes place in New Zealand’s construction sector, more people will be needed, according to the BCITO. In Auckland, for instance, the rapid increase in construction work will lead to an estimated $17 billion of new projects in 2018.
The apprenticeship milestone represents good news, and it reflected a 10 per cent increase since last November, according to BCITO CEO Warwick Quinn. However, the employment sector will need “thousands” of new apprentices each year to meet the demand for several industries, Quinn added.
The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment estimated that construction-related work would require about 49,000 more workers in the next five years, bringing the total number to more than 539,000 workers.
Quinn acknowledged that while construction employment opportunities remain rife, a shortage of skilled labourers poses problems to workforce growth.
The increase in industry apprentices helps solve a seemingly short supply of construction workers, although the government and private still needs to do more to prevent a shortage of labourers in the country.