Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Adult Retraining.

13.

asked the Minister for Labour the current provision for adult retraining; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

I am not sure how the Deputy interprets ‘adult' but for the purpose of this reply I am giving information relating to training arrangements for persons over 25 years by agencies for which I am responsible.

Training of such persons is carried out by AnCO and CERT. In 1984 AnCO and CERT plan to cater on their training courses for about 8,160 unemployed persons over 25 years of age at an estimated cost of £18,455,000, which includes aid from the European Social Fund.

The Government intend to increase the number of training opportunities for unemployed persons over 25 years of age. The 1984 figures which I have quoted represent an increase of 8 per cent compared to 1983.

Provision is also made under the New Industry and Domestic Industry Training Grants Schemes funded from the Industrial Development Agencies and the ESF for retraining activity within new and existing firms. It is not possible, however, to estimate the number of people over 25 years who will be catered for by this provision in 1984.

What proportion of the funds the Minister referred to come from the European Social Fund? Is the Minister satisfied that the money allocated for adult retraining is adequate for the foreseeable future?

I am not sure off hand but I estimate that approximately 55 per cent of the money comes from the ESF. I will get confirmation of that figure for the Deputy.

Will the Minister give the House the figure for those under 25? Is the Minister in a position to tell the House how many redundant apprentices have been retrained or are in the process of being retrained by AnCO? Will the Minister agree that because of the economic position many companies are laying off apprentices after one or two years and before they have completed their apprenticeship?

The question deals with adults.

The Minister said he was confused about what was meant by "adult".

For the purpose of clarification I was relating "adult" to those over 25 years. I do not have the information the Deputy has sought here but I will be happy to answer such a question if the Deputy puts one on the Order Paper.