Ministers statements: Melbourne Metro rail project

Mr NOONAN (Minister for Industry and Employment) — I am very pleased to follow the Premier to talk about the transformational jobs that are coming in the member for Melbourne’s electorate with the Melbourne Metro Tunnel. As we know, it is the biggest public transport project in the state’s history, and it will of course free up significant capacity to run more trains more often. Last Saturday I was very privileged to be able to meet some of our best and brightest engineering cadets, who are helping to bring this project to life. They spoke very passionately about the project. They spoke about getting a start on the project. They spoke about the size and complexity of the project and about how the project will transform Melbourne forever.

I did meet both Gabby and James, two young people very determined to succeed as part of this project. Because of our record infrastructure agenda, which the Premier just ran through, many young people are getting a start on some of our major projects right across Victoria. I am very pleased to remind the house that this is happening because of our major project skills guarantee. The guarantee absolutely ensures that where our major projects take place we have 10 per cent of the workforce committed to apprentices, trainees and cadets. That means that across our infrastructure pipeline already we have more than 1500 opportunities for apprentices, trainees and cadets across 30 projects. Already 52 apprentices, trainees and cadets are working on the early works package as part of the Melbourne Metro project. We will have 7000 people work on that project, including 500 apprentices, trainees and cadets, at the peak.

This is Labor’s way. This is about giving young people a start. This of course stands in stark contrast to those opposite, who cut TAFE and left young people on the scrap heap. We will not do that.