Cable hails success of apprenticeships

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The Government yesterday hailed new figures showing a big increase in the number of apprenticeships over the past year after its “unprecedented” investment.

The Business Department said there had been 442,700 apprenticeship starts between August 2010 and July 2011, a rise of more than 50 per cent with final figures from 2009/10.

The figures included 175,500 among people over the age of 25, compared with 49,100 in the previous year, and 138,900 starts by 19 to 24-year-olds (113,800).

There were increases in apprenticeships in manufacturing, engineering and construction as well as health and public services.

Business Secretary Vince Cable said: “This Government’s unprecedented investment in apprenticeships is working for businesses and creating long-term career opportunities for record numbers of trainees.”