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Brown to fund more apprentices

An extra 35,000 apprenticeships could be created after the Prime Minister announced a Pounds 140 million funding boost this week.

Coming on top of more than Pounds 1 billion already committed to apprenticeships for 2009-10, Gordon Brown said the money for apprentices in the public and private sector was part of the Government's attempts to create more jobs during the recession.

Mr Brown said: "I don't want these old approaches that the Tories had before, where they just stood by and left the unemployed to suffer and left people to lose their homes through repossessions."

But the Conservatives said it was not enough and that the Government should match its proposals of investing Pounds 775m in an extra 100,000 apprenticeships, paid for by taking funds from Train to Gain.

David Willetts, shadow secretary for innovation, universities and skills, said: "If Gordon Brown really wants to help people in the recession, he should adopt our proposals to redirect wasteful spending which would provide tens of thousands more proper employee-led apprenticeships."

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