Assistant Minister for Education and Training, Senator Simon Birmingham, today met with the Indian Government Minister for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, Shri Rajiv Pratap Rudy, to discuss skills priorities for both countries.
“Today’s meeting has helped build our bilateral skills relationship with India so we can seize emerging opportunities in both our countries,” Senator Birmingham said.
“International education is Australia’s most successful services export, worth $16.3 billion in 2013-14, and supporting around 130,000 jobs across Australia.
“In 2013-14, education related services with India made up $1.5 billion of our services exports.
“India has a goal to upskill 500 million of its people by 2022, requiring an estimated 70,000 highly skilled trainers now and 20,000 additional trainers each year.
“To achieve this, India must address significant challenges, particularly in ensuring that training produces skills that are globally relevant, and that there is a sufficient supply of highly skilled trainers to deliver this.
“We are negotiating a Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement with India and piloting international training and assessment courses to upskill Indian trainers and assessors. We are also working to sign a Free Trade Agreement with India by the end of this year, with particular opportunities for service industries.
“In partnership with industry, our Government has developed internationally relevant training courses, benchmarked to an Australian standard. These have the potential to be used so Australian training providers can help meet India’s skill challenges.
“We have announced the 2016 Endeavour Mobility Grants that will provide around $8.3 million to support at least 2500 Australian VET, undergraduate and postgraduate students in having an international study experience.
“We have also created international work opportunities for Australian undergraduate students through the Government’s signature initiative, the New Colombo Plan.
“We understand the importance of skills and training to give people opportunity, secure prosperity for both nations and will continue to work to build these opportunities,” Senator Birmingham said.
Media contact: Caitlin Keage 0427 729 987