The details of the National Broadband Network rollout plan were released yesterday (March 29), indicating that more than 3.5 million homes, schools, hospitals and commercial customers will have access to the service in the next three years.
This includes 1,010,700 New South Welshmen, 691,600 Victorians and 678,600 Queenslanders.
And while the implementation of the scheme will have positive effects for householders and businesses in terms of communication options, the Communications Electrical and Plumbing Union (CEPU) is calling on the federal government to make the rollout beneficial to trade workers as well.
CEPU national assistant secretary Allen Hicks stated that renewed commitment to apprentices in electrical trades is the key to avoiding a future skills shortage.
"The construction phase of the NBN is a perfect opportunity to boost the number of apprenticeships and ensure we create the electrical trades workforce of the future," he said.
Mr Hicks explained that the predicted, multi-decade resources-sector boom will require an increase in skilled workers in order to effectively propel Australia toward future prosperity - and that the NBN rollout could create this.
"There's a simple formula the government needs to follow - employ more apprentice electricians, put them on reasonable wages and we can set ourselves up for the economy of the future."