A number of major employers have announced plans to take on thousands on new apprenticeships in a scheme to get more young people into work.
Morrisons have announced plans to create 9,000 new apprenticeships over the next five years, with Whitbread, who own Premier Inn and Costa Coffee, have announced plans to create 6,000 new apprentices by 2020.
Dairy Crest and National Grid have also committed to create new apprenticeships, with 200 and 600 new apprenticeship places respectively.
The Prime Minister while announcing the new Costa Coffee apprenticeship scheme said that he wanted the qualifications to be level pegging with university degrees.
“We want apprenticeships to be level-pegging with a university degree giving millions more people the dignity of work and a regular pay packet.”
Andy Harrison, chief executive of Whitbread, said: “I firmly believe that investing in apprenticeships is essential to Whitbread’s future success and to the health of the UK economy, as well as helping the next generation to achieve their full potential.”
Labour says it would guarantee apprenticeships for every school leaver in England who “gets the grades” by 2020, while the Liberal Democrats says it would offer an extra £1 an hour for the lowest paid apprentices.
The Prime Minister added that a future Conservative government would create three million new apprenticeships.