No delay to Levy, says Minister

Published on 15 Sep 2016

There will be no delay to the launch of the government's proposed apprenticeship levy, says the new Skills Minister.

Robert Halfon has responded to calls for the delay of the Levy launch by reiterating his commitment to kick off the new scheme in April next year.

The move will see specialist providers such as APM, work alongside employers in delivering apprenticeship programmes that support three million people into employment during this Parliament.

"The apprenticeship levy is a game-changer," he wrote.

"It will create a ladder of opportunities for millions of people and give businesses the skills they need now and for the future.

"The levy allows us to invest more than ever in apprenticeships. Delaying the apprenticeship levy would mean delaying millions of opportunities for both business and people."

With a clear focus on developing the UK's skills and improving long-term productivity, the levy is designed to put control of funding firmly in the hands of employers.

Applied at a rate of 0.5 per cent of an employer's wage bill (if in excess of £3m), it will raise an expected £3m annually and replace all existing apprenticeship funding.

Despite a broad consensus that the UK must develop its own skills base post-Brexit, many businesses and industry bodies have criticised the roll out of the new scheme.

"We have been working closely with employers of all sizes to determine how the levy will work for them and will continue to do so," added Mr Halfon.

"We will listen to what they have to say to ensure the levy will work best for them."