The LNP will drive greater productivity and profitability in Queensland’s agriculture and horticulture industries through a $3.5 million workforce planning and training package to better meet industry needs for skilled workers.
LNP Leader Campbell Newman said the $3.5 million package over four years would be initially targeted at horticulture – the largest employer in the agriculture sector followed by a broader agriculture workforce plan.
“We’ll reverse the decimation of agriculture and horticulture education and training made by the tired, 20-year Labor government,” Mr Newman said.
“This is a real commitment to support the future workforce needs of our agriculture and horticulture industries and the families and communities they support.”
Mr Newman said the LNP would invest $500,000 to develop a Horticulture Workforce Plan and $3 million over three years to improve training in conjunction with industry, universities, training providers, the Australian Agricultural College Corporation and schools.
“The horticulture industry is currently reviewing the Horticulture Workforce Plan, which identified training and skills development priorities. As part of our strategic plan for agriculture, we’ll make workforce planning in horticulture a priority,” he said.
“Horticulture is a major permanent, casual and seasonal employer in many local communities across Queensland. We’ll review the 2008 Horticulture Workforce Plan with industry and set a new plan for the next three years.”
Mr Newman said the LNP would work with industry and trainers to overhaul career pathways to agriculture and improve the profile of graduate careers, school- based apprenticeships and traineeships. We will work with the industry and tertiary institutions to improve awareness and standing of agriculture training institutions – including agricultural colleges.
“Only the LNP understands the need to revitalise our frontline services and invest in science and technology – and particularly agricultural and animal sciences. Only the LNP has a 2040 vision to double agricultural production, one of the four pillars of our economy,” Mr Newman said.
“As part of this vision, the LNP will restore agriculture as a standalone department with strong leadership and direction. It’s time for a change. It’s time to get Queensland back on track.”