TODAY |

Women and Māori heeding the call as construction industry continues to boom

More women, Māori and Pacific Islanders are joining the booming construction industry.

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1 NEWS can reveal exclusive figures showing that since 2015 apprentices have increased by nearly 28,000. Source: 1 NEWS

1 NEWS can reveal exclusive figures which show since 2015 the number of apprentices in the sector has increased from nearly 28,000 to more than 35,000, as the building boom continues with new homes and commercial projects.

Women apprentices are also on the up, from 412 in 2015 to 762. 

There's been nearly a doubling in Māori and Pasifika students to just over 7000, adding to an extra 11,000 workers in the past two years.

Despite this, more workers are still needed in the construction industry.

“We have more jobs than people and we're looking for strong Kiwi candidates for our clients, but we're also having to go offshore to Australia, Asia and Europe and further afield to find suitable candidates,” managing director of Hays NZ Adam Shapley told 1 NEWS.

The Government insists training is the long-term answer.

“Ensuring that we let our people know that they can come in to be apprentices, ensuring we have more women, Asian, Pacific and Māori workers,” Building and Construction Minister Jenny Salesa says.

With the Government set to reveal how it'll spend its $12 billion infrastructure investment, the pressure for workers will continue.