Labor unveils a tech jobs pledge – but it lacks serious ambition

Opposition leader Anthony Albanese has pledged to work with the tech sector to help create another 340,000 jobs by 2030 if Labor wins the May federal election.

While the headline in the Opposition announcement is 1.2 million jobs, the sector already employs around 860,000 people and the Tech Council of Australia (TCA) last year set a target of 1 million jobs by 2025.

That means the Labor pledge is an extra 40,000 jobs a year from 2025 onwards. During the pandemic, tech added 65,000 jobs a year.

Since 2005, Australian tech jobs have grown by 66%, compared to an average jobs growth rate of 27% across the economy. However, the local tech sector is still smaller than peer economies such as Canada, and the nation ranks 36th out of 38 in the OECD for its ICT trade balance.

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