The West

WA  faces shift in job skills demand
Growth industry: WA will need more farm workers. Picture: Supplied

WA will have to find another 300,000 workers over the next decade and they will need to have farming, teaching or nursing skills, a report suggests.

Compiled by Bankwest Curtin Economics Centre and to be released today, the report into the State's changing workforce also argued more resources had to go into the childcare sector so parents could claim a job.

Almost 1.4 million people are in full and part-time work in WA, a jump over the past decade.

According to centre director Alan Duncan, another 300,000 workers will be needed by 2025, with most likely to be homegrown West Australians rather than interstate or international migrants.

The report comes as the State's peak business lobby announces its own blueprint for the future of the WA economy, which it wants to double in size in the next two decades.

The Chamber of Commerce and Industry will today unveil ambitious targets to double the size of the economy to $570 billion, find jobs for an extra 740,000 people and homes for one million people in 20 years. It will require research and development spending to increase sixfold and more than half a million extra people to have a tertiary qualification.

The CCI also calls for a range of government, economic and social reforms, including reining in government spending, fixing the GST distribution, and a bipartisan infrastructure plan.

The CCI's blueprint is aimed at sustaining a new wave of economic growth once the mining construction boom passes.

After riding the back of the mining boom since 2002, jobs growth in the resources sector is about to slow.

Instead, jobs in the health care, education, accommodation, food services and retail sectors are tipped to become more common.

And after years of struggle, the farming sector is about to expand faster than the mining sector on the back of strong demand for key WA food products.

Professor Duncan said mining and construction would remain key parts of the WA economy but other sectors would take some pressure off them.

WA has the biggest gap between male and female wages in the country, with a 25 per cent difference.

The West Australian

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