SCOTTISH Labour want to create 5,000 “properly-paid” apprenticeships to help hand opportunities to young people as the country emerges from the pandemic.

The party has also set out a sharing scheme so that businesses in key industries such as agriculture and construction can take on an apprentice together.

Labour’s blueprint for the economy also attempts to tackle low pay by ensuring all apprentices receive a higher wage than the £4.30 hourly rate that many currently receive, regardless of age. The party’s proposals would involve more than doubling the hourly rate the of a 23-year-old apprentice.

Scottish Labour leader Anas Sarwar has said that creating new work opportunities for Scotland’s young people is ‘central’ to his vision of a jobs recovery plan, which is due to be unveiled this week.

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Mr Sarwar said: “Creating new work opportunities for the young people of Scotland is central to our jobs recovery plan.

“Scotland’s young people are worried about their futures as a result of the pandemic and the economic downturn that will take years to recover from.

“The partial re-opening of the economy today is a step in the right direction, but we need to take urgent action to kickstart our economy."

He added: “Scottish Labour’s jobs recovery plan seeks to stimulate our economy and place fairness and opportunity at its heart.

“By creating 5,000 properly paid apprenticeship places, we can deliver a brighter future for thousands of young Scots if we keep the focus on recovery and don’t return to the old political arguments.”