The Abbott Government is investing in businesses in Grey through the $664 million Industry Skills Fund (ISF) and the annual $200 million Australian Apprenticeship Support Network.

Assistant Minister for Education and Training Senator Simon Birmingham said the ISF will provide over 250,000 training places and support services over the next five years across Australia.

“Three businesses in the electorate of Grey have collectively secured over $65,000 worth of funding through the ISF. Golden North, Koch Ag Services and Cowell Electric Supply will all benefit from ISF funding, which is fantastic news for this large and diverse electorate,” Senator Birmingham said.

Member for Grey Rowan Ramsay said this funding will allow these businesses to expand into new markets and territories, upskill staff, and broaden their service offerings.

“Golden North will use its ISF funding to help 30 staff members complete a Certificate III in Competitive Systems and Practices, which in turn will help Golden North to develop new products and pursue expansion into new markets domestically and internationally,” Mr Ramsey said.

“Koch Ag Services, which specialises in precision agriculture products, will use their ISF funding to upskill their staff so they can work to expand their presence across South Australia and introduce a new IT system.

“Regional powerline construction and electrical contracting company, Cowell Electric Supply will use the ISF to broaden its service delivery into new areas including project management, plumbing, gas fitting, instrumentation, and refrigeration and air conditioning services.

“These are great examples of how local businesses in Grey are using the Australian Government’s Industry Skills Fund to support growth and competitiveness through boosting the skills of new and existing employees,” Mr Ramsey said.

Senator Birmingham and Mr Ramsey spoke about the Government’s skill development programs during a visit to Ceduna and Streaky Bay on Thursday.

Mr Ramsey said there is no doubt SA is facing challenging times and the best thing the government can do is encourage business to tap into government support to upskill their workforce and kick the economy along.

Senator Birmingham said the Australian Apprenticeship Support Network (AASN) is also providing assistance to people looking for a new career and employers across the electorate of Grey and helping to recruit, train and retain apprentices.

“The AASN reforms mean that the 2,401 apprentices in training today across the Grey electorate, and the thousands more that will start in the future, will get to realise the full benefits of an apprenticeship and the rewarding careers that can come as a result,” he said.

Senator Birmingham was in Ceduna visiting the offices of MAS National, one of three Apprenticeship Network Providers in South Australia.

“These services, which are being delivered from more than 100 extra locations around the country, including an additional eight locations in the Grey electorate, will help apprentices and employers to navigate the training system, making it easier for people to become an apprentice, and for business to employ apprentices.”

The Australian Government has also introduced Trade Support Loans of up to $20,000 each to help apprentices with the costs of living and tools while undertaking an apprenticeship, and is providing financial incentives to around 80,000 employers of apprentices each year.
For more information on the Industry Skills Fund, visit or call the single business service on 13 28 46.

For more information on the Australian Apprenticeship Support Network visit or call the referral line on 13 38 73.

Media contacts:
Senator Birmingham: Caitlin Keage 0427 729 987
Rowan Ramsey: Katie Hallett-Patterson 08 8633 1744