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Only 10 per cent of jobs under JobMaker youth subsidy will be new: Treasury

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A wage subsidy scheme for businesses that hire unemployed young people has been criticised after Treasury officials confirmed only 10 per cent of the jobs created would be genuinely new.

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The Morrison government has promised to generate 450,000 jobs through the JobMaker program, which offers businesses $200 a week for every new worker they employ under 29 years, and $100 a week for those aged from 30 to 35.

But only 45,000 of jobs supported through the $4 billion hiring credit scheme will be new.

The scheme has been criticised for doing nothing to help an estimated 900,000 older unemployed find work, and sparked fears that some would actually be fired in order for employers to be paid to replace them younger staff.

A Treasury official yesterday told a Senate estimates committee there was a wide range of error built into estimates of how many jobs the subsidy would create, and it was hard to judge whether an employer would have put on a young worker only due to receiving the hiring credit.

“In costing this we’ve made a conservative assumption that about 10 per cent of employment is genuinely additional, it would not have happened but for the hiring credit,” she was reported as saying.

“A significant proportion are going to be additional.”

Shadow treasurer Jim Chalmers said Labor was always sceptical the scheme would create hundreds of thousands of jobs.

“Something like 90 per cent of those jobs that the government claimed aren’t actually going to be created by this program,” Chalmers said on Tuesday.

“They’ve given false hope to 400,000 younger workers in this country, which is pretty shameful of itself.”

It has also emerged the Morrison government’s claim of more than 500,000 jobs being created from two other major initiatives were not based on Treasury advice.

The government said its energy security road map would create 130,000 jobs by 2030.

As well, its manufacturing plan is being promoted as creating 80,000 direct jobs and 300,000 indirect jobs.

Treasury officials have confirmed the job figures for the energy plan were produced by the industry department, based on advice from consultants.

Treasury also had no visibility over the figures used in the manufacturing plan.

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said the industry department had the ability to do its own projections as one of the government’s key economic agencies.

He said it was appropriate the industry department provided the figures.

-with AAP

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