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January 10, 2008

Question written on 10/01/2008

In answer to the main question and in the earlier exchange on adult apprenticeships, the Minister made much of the quantity of apprenticeships put in place by the Government. Will he give more emphasis to considerations of quality?not just having an inspection regime, but, more importantly, ensuring that our current apprenticeships are relevant for the global skills that will be required for the decades ahead?

Answered by David Lammy, Minister for Skills

Yes. Key to ensuring quality is inspection, which I have to tell the hon. Gentleman did not exist before. It is also key to ensure completion of apprenticeships, which has increased from below 25 per cent. to 63 per cent.?another achievement. It is also important that employers are confident in our apprenticeships, so I was pleased to hear Sir Terry Leahy, chief executive of Tesco, saying:
"I am a huge fan of apprenticeships because of the benefits they bring to the individual and business".