The Construction Industry Council is rolling out new training schemes at a cost of HK$214 million which the council hopes will lead to 8,700 new workers a year being trained for the construction industry.
Council chairman Lee Shing-see said currently there are over 300,000 registered construction workers but about half of them were over 50 years of age and there were skills mismatches.
A buoyant construction industry as a result of increased government spending on infrastructure and more private building projects has led to a shortage of workers.
As such it was necessary to add new blood and to this end, the council was splashing out HK$214 million on promoting four training schemes to attract new workers.
For example, the “Subcontractor Co-operation Training Scheme” aims to hire workers first and then provide on-the-job training for six months while being paid at least HK$12,000 per month.
On completion of training, the subcontractor would employ the worker for a year.
Another programme, the “Contractor Co-operation Training Scheme” targets eight types of electrical and mechanical trades where the worker is trained for six months and is paid HK$150 a day as a training subsidy.
First year trainees at the Vocational Training Council studying for diplomas in vocational education on electrical and mechanical engineering courses will get a monthly subsidy of HK$2,800 with employers afterwards being required to employ them for a year.
The fourth programme was targeted at workers who have completed construction industry training schemes and required additional on-the-job training.
Billy Wong Wing-hoo, chairman of the Construction Industry Training Board, which comes under the CIC, said currently there were 9,000 vacancies representing a vacancy rate of 15 percent in the construction industry.
In the past, the CIC provided 3,000 training places a year but with the new schemes on board, the council hoped up to 8,700 workers a year would be trained up for the construction industry.