How the Victorian Budget Will Affect Employment Opportunities for Young People in Apprenticeships and Traineeships


The Apprenticeship Employment Network (AEN) Victoria has welcomed the Victorian Government’s attention to the issues facing apprenticeships, VET, skills, and job perspectives in the budget released earlier today to focus on getting young people into secure, skilled work through apprenticeships and traineeships.

The measures affecting apprentices and trainees in the Victorian State Budget are below.

VET / TAFE funding 

  • $738.6 million to help more Victorians get the training they need, back in-demand industries to give employers a pipeline of highly‑skilled workers, grow our manufacturing and innovation ecosystems and improve safety in the workplace.
  • $186 million to expand subsidised training, including greater eligibility for Free TAFE, so more people can embark on a great career or re-train into growing industries.
  • This will include the removal of the once-per-lifetime limit on Free TAFE courses for a number of training pathways, so workers can return to TAFE to upskill once they’ve moved into their desired careers. 
  • $90.5 million will meet the demand for subsidised vocational training across the system, and a further $90 million will be directed to TAFEs to provide priority skills, job placement support, improve student well-being and maintain high-quality workforces.
  • $3.8 million to review and update curriculum and assessment resources right across Victoria’s TAFE network.


  • A new $4 million mental health training program will ensure they get the support they need. This will focus on young men, especially in the construction industry, which has a high rate of suicide, young women, and members of our LGBTIQ+ and culturally diverse communities who can face extra pressures establishing their careers.
  • $1.5 million to establish and deliver the Apprenticeship Taskforce. This builds on the important work of Apprenticeships Victoria and Apprenticeships Support Officers in championing the fair treatment of all apprentices and trainees.
  • Victoria’s Big Build will help more women in the construction sector, with $2.4 million to break traditional gender barriers and create great new career opportunities.

Jobs Victoria 

  • $35 million will support it to target vulnerable jobseekers experiencing entrenched disadvantage – particularly those in priority locations.
  • Advanced manufacturing is Made in Victoria plan to grow skilled jobs and cement Victoria as Australia’s manufacturing engine room, with $36.2 million for local businesses to expand and boost productivity, including through providing R&D grants to drive discoveries that will benefit our economy.
  • Increase Victoria’s capability to secure key defence sector supply-chain projects with a $4 million investment, so our state can benefit from record national and global opportunities – and the jobs they create.
  • $2 million to support the rollout of the Fair Jobs Code, which came into effect in December 2022 – making sure suppliers and businesses benefiting from government contracts or grants meet strict requirements to provide safe and inclusive workplaces.
  • Ethical Clothing Australia with $4 million to ensure that as our local textile, clothing and footwear manufacturing sector grows, and companies are doing the right thing by their workers.
  • $20 million into the International Investment Attraction Fund to attract global companies to create local jobs, alongside the $12 million Boosting Victorian Exports program to help Victorian companies enter global markets and grow our $50 billion export sector.
  • $3.1 million boost for the skilled migration program.
  • $17 million to boost local jobs with revitalised cultural hubs in Box Hill, Chinatown, Dandenong, Oakleigh, Elsternwick, Footscray, Richmond and other key locations, support local multicultural trader groups and provide scholarships to train 500 staff to support small businesses in multicultural precincts. 
  • $9 million for the Australian-first Gig Worker Support Service.
  • $6.7 million for Wage Inspectorate Victoria to continue its important work investigating underpayment claims and running important education campaigns.
  • $24.1 million to hire 20 specialist inspectors and create a new dedicated inspectorate within WorkSafe.

AEN look forward to working with the Victorian Government to strengthen apprenticeship opportunities and supports for all Victorians.

Further information:

2023-24 Strategy and Outlook | Department of Treasury and Finance Victoria

2023-24 Service Delivery | Department of Treasury and Finance Victoria


Executive Director of the Global Apprenticeship Network, Australia (GAN) and the Apprenticeship Employment Network, Victoria (AEN), Gary Workman.


Parnell | |0412 228 282

Natalya | |0451 586 157

About the Apprenticeship Employment Network (AEN) Victoria

The Group Training Association of Victoria, trading as Apprenticeship Employment Network (AEN), is the peak industry body representing not-for-profit group training companies across Victoria and is part of a national network of group training associations.  

This national network of Group Training Organisations employs over 24,000 apprentices and trainees, Australia’s largest employer of apprentices and trainees. 

Within Victorian AEN, our members employ over 7,000 apprentices and trainees across all industry sectors of small to medium-sized businesses, supported by a network of 10,000+ host employers.

About the Global Apprenticeship Network (GAN) Australia

The Global Apprenticeship Network (GAN) is a business-driven alliance with the overarching goal of encouraging and linking business initiatives on skills and employment opportunities for youth through apprenticeships. GAN is a network where private sector companies, business federations and associations come together to share best practices to advocate and commit to action around youth employability and skills development. It is supported by the International Labour Organization (ILO). GAN Australia is one of 17 countries that share in best practices.