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The deputy prime minister has announced that a £1bn fund is to be created to help the young unemployed get into employment. The money will be utilised over a three year period, providing apprenticeships, job subsidies and work placements to help half a million unemployed youngsters aged between 16 and 24.

The scheme has been launched as the number of youths not in any form of education, employment or training peaks at almost 20 percent, or 1,163,000. This is an increase of 137,000 in comparison with 2010. Subsidised work places will be provided for 160,000 youths, with businesses in the private sector being given £2275 if they are willing to employ someone aged 18 to 24. Each placement will last for six months, available to anyone who has been receiving jobseekers allowance for nine months. If a placement isn’t completed, benefits will cease. The subsidy provided to businesses will cover the cost of National Insurance for employers.

According to Nick Clegg, the scheme won’t be available in the public sector, gives a lower subsidy to employers but could lead to a chance of permanent employment. The deputy prime minister said that his team had formulated the scheme by listening to what employers were saying. They said:

“If you give us a bit of help at the beginning to employ the start-up costs of employing a young person, then invariably we stand a good chance of giving that young person a job.”

However, it has yet to be determined how the scheme will be funded.

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