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Media release: Extra university places will boost domestic skilled workforce

Group of Eight universities have a central role to play in ensuring Australia has a skilled workforce capacity,
capable of meeting the demands of new and emerging industry sectors.

“Increasing the number of Commonwealth Supported Places in Australian universities is the key to addressing
our skills shortages in areas such as engineering, AI, quantum computing and advanced manufacturing,” said
Go8 Chief Executive Vicki Thomson.

“Today’s announcement by Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese recognises the pivotal role of Australian
universities in building a sustainable domestic workforce and is a down payment on meeting the skills needs
in priority areas. We certainly support the intent of today’s announcement but also acknowledge that more
will need to be done to address the emerging skills gap in engineering and technology related fields.

“Redirecting funding from other disciplines to high need areas is not the answer – we do need additional
places to boost our domestic capability and ensure an ongoing supply of skilled workers in critical industries.
“A recent Go8 Industry Summit uncovered the extent of our engineering workforce crisis, and this is
applicable across a range of Australian industry sectors.

“Funding constraints are impacting the supply of domestic graduates and international competition for skilled
workers is accelerating.

“COVID-19 demonstrated the importance domestic capability and in the current environment, boosting
support for our world class universities to educate and train our domestic talent is the most efficient way to
tackle Australia’s skilled workforce shortage.

“With the right policy levers our world class universities can successfully deliver the domestically trained
workforce we need to meet the nation’s challenges in the future.”

Contact: Vicki Thomson, Group of Eight Chief Executive on +61 417 808 472