The Skills Minister Nick Boles has told the AELP conference that Brexit will not delay the introduction of the Apprentice Levy. Speaking to assembled training providers, Mr Boles, who had suggested that the Levy would be under threat should the UK vote to Leave the EU, appeared to backtrack to calm fears of a delay.
Mr Boles told the audience:
“We should continue to work on the basis that the apprenticeship levy is coming in April of 2017 as planned, and in the way it was planned. If anything, the need for investment in skills development will be even more urgent and more important for a United Kingdom that is outside the European Union than it is for one inside. Certainly not less,” he told the conference.
Funding arrangements likely to be delayed, however, Mr Boles did admit that the timetable for publishing more detail on funding information for apprenticeship reforms would be subject to ‘a little delay’. Details were supposed to be forthcoming by the end of June, but the Minister said that might not happen. He added:
“We should all continue to assume and work on the assumption that the apprenticeship levy is coming in, in the way planned as planned.
“We had planned to be published further detailed information about the pricing of specific apprenticeship standards in the next few days. I’m sure you will understand that is now going to be a little delayed, but only a little we still expect to get that information out well before the summer break.”
This week reports have emerged that BIS is considering changing funding arrangements in order to ease the burden on smaller firms.
Mark Scott, Director Futureworks Yorkshire commented,
“It is ever more important now that we are not derailed from recruiting apprentices. We must keep positive and maintain our resolve, despite Brexit effects, to grow young people into our skilled workforce of tomorrow. Our future and theirs depends on it”
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