Construction Industry Update: 2023-2024 State Budget

The WA Budget for 2023-2024 (Budget) was delivered on 11 May 2023, handing down another massive surplus of $3.3 billion for the next financial year. You can access the Budget here.

Construction Workforce

The WA Government is allocating $48 million to expand the construction sector workforce by funding training initiatives to increase the residential construction workforce, support local jobs within the construction industry and accelerate the supply of new homes for WA’s growing population. The $48 million will go towards (amongst other things):

  • lifting the Base Employer Grant from $10,000 to $12,000 for apprentices;
  • expanding the Group Training Wages subsidy to include residential and commercial construction sector apprentices; and
  • a subsidised visa scheme to attract more skilled migrants to the construction industry ($11 million).

The Budget aims to ease the bottleneck in construction projects, particularly in the residential building space, by expanding the labour force to ease delays in the provision of labour and materials being experienced in the industry.

Infrastructure Projects

The Budget also indicates a record investment in infrastructure projects across WA. The aim of this is to create a pipeline of activity for the construction industry which delivers major projects for WA’s future.

The WA Government has allocated $2.5 billion to go towards new road, port and electricity infrastructure.

A further $1.7 billion will also be invested towards WA’s METRONET project. It is understood that the year ahead will see delivery across the METRONET project accelerate with the completion of the southern concourse of the new Bayswater Station and the new Yanchep Rail Extension.

Social Housing

The Budget delivers a $750 million boost for housing supply. This includes significant additional funding for social housing and homelessness initiatives, increasing the capacity of the residential construction workforce to deliver homes and initiatives to encourage urban infill and regional land supply. This includes a $450 million increase in funding to the Social
Housing Investment Fund, which increases the total number of social houses to be added to 4,000, with 1,200 already delivered.

These initiatives will be pivotal and is intended to provide support to the thriving construction industry in WA.

Disclaimer – the information contained in this publication does not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as such. You should seek legal advice in relation to any particular matter you may have before relying or acting on this information. The Lavan team are here to assist.