Perth, Australia (PressExposure) May 26, 2009 -- The groundbreaking reforms to higher education in the Budget will lead to a significant boost in the number of young Australians with degrees.
Because of that initiative, we expect an additional 50,000 new students will secure university places in the next four years alone.
At the same time, the Government is dealing with the increase in unemployment by investing in the skills of the people most affected by the downturn.
This additional assistance will help people who need training to avoid long-term unemployment and gain work when the economy recovers.
By investing in skills, the measures will also benefit the whole economy - not least, the mining sector - when it moves into recovery.
The Government is investing $1.5 billion in a Jobs and Training Compact.
The Compact includes a further 81,000 training places - which brings the total number of Productivity Places being offered by this Government to over 710,000, at a total cost of $2 billion.
Think about that for a moment: 700,000 newly trained Australians.
Like our investments in infrastructure, these investments in skill formation will ensure that Australia is primed and ready to meet the inevitable increase in demand for our natural resources, which we hope is just over the horizon.