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3,500 apprentices registered in Ireland in 2016

Irish construction apprenticeships
apprenticeships skills gap

Government ups the ante to target 50,000 apprenticeship registrations by 2020

Richard Bruton TD, Minister for Education and Skills, will announce details today of how the Government aims to hit a targeted 50,000 apprenticeship registrations by 2020, as figures released this week indicate a take up of 3,500 apprenticeships in 2016, and 2,500 completing trainee courses. This goal was set out in Ireland's National Skills Strategy 2025, which was published this time last year.

The vast bulk of apprenticeships that were taken up are in traditional craft areas. The Government plans to add 13 new apprenticeship courses next year to facilitate a further 1,500 participants. However, these are not all in the construction sector. The range of new apprenticeships due to be launched over the coming months are in areas such as financial services, medical devices and polymer processing.

By 2020 the Government hopes to have 67 courses on offer and 9,000 apprentices registered. The Government also hopes to double the number of traineeship programmes and participants by 2020. Apprenticeships are generally of two to four years in duration with a substantial period of time paid in the workplace, while traineeships are typically between six months and two years in length. Minister Bruton will today set out a roadmap to that 2020 goal.

Seven women took up construction apprenticeships in 2016

Department figures reveal that women took up only 33 State-funded apprenticeships in 2016. Of these, 19 were based in the electrical sector, seven in construction, six in motor mechanics and one in a print media.

Irish construction apprenticeships skills gap

There has been a huge deficit in Irish construction apprenticeships coming through during the recession, and there is a worrying skills gap in the market. Figures were at their lowest in 2013, falling to 5,700, from a high of approximately 29,000 Irish construction apprenticeships. They have now climbed back to just over 10,000. There are currently 27 apprenticeships programmes available, predominantly in construction, engineering and the motor sector.

Click here to visit the Construction Industry Federation apprentices.ie website to learn more about what construction apprenticeship opportunities are available or to register an apprenticeship opportunity with your firm