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North Australia technologies signs on to the Skilling Australia's Defence Industry Program.

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MEDIA RELEASE The Hon. Bruce Billson, MP Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence 016/2007 Thursday, 22 March 2007 NORTH AUSTRALIA TECHNOLOGIES SIGNS ON TO THE SKILLING AUSTRALIA’S DEFENCE INDUSTRY PROGRAM The Defence Materiel Organisation (DMO) and North Australia Technologies (NAT) today signed an agreement that enables the company to deliver a tailored, in-house apprenticeship training program with help from the Skilling Australia’s Defence Industry (SADI) Program. Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence Bruce Billson said NAT’s initiative to develop a new in-house apprenticeship program in IT and electro-technology is part of the company’s 10-year plan to grow its current workforce. “The NAT apprenticeship program will allow for a total intake of up to 10 apprentices each year for the next five years,” Mr Billson said. “Distance, isolation and the critical skills shortage being experienced in the Northern Territory all played a significant part in NAT’s motivation to develop and implement this apprenticeship program.” The new apprenticeship scheme will greatly assist local and regional businesses in the Northern Territory wishing to train their IT and electro-technology apprentices locally. NAT will make a number of training places available to apprentices from other local employers. DMO Director SADI Program Robyn Wall said the NAT apprentice program is innovative and will add considerable growth in the Defence electronics industry in the Northern Territory. “I congratulate NAT on its strong commitment to workforce growth and development. It is pleasing to note the increased numbers of small and medium enterprises such as NAT, participating in the SADI Program,” Ms Wall said. “The SADI Program continues to demonstrate its utility and flexibility in ensuring Australia’s defence industry increases and upgrades the diverse skills base needed to deliver world class equipment to the ADF.” Through the SADI Program, the Australian Government will invest up to $215 million over ten years to assist defence industry to generate additional skilled positions, up-skill existing employees and improve the quality and quantity of skills training. Media Information: Cameron Hill (Mr Billson) 02 6277 7820 0408 239 521 Defence Media Liaison (Defence) 02 6265 3343 0408 498 664 For a free subscription to Defence Direct, the Minister for Defence's monthly e-newsletter, please follow this link