The government has said at least 10,000 apprenticeships will be created despite the current financial downturn after a bill was announced last week.

John Denham and Ed Balls announced the launch of the National Apprenticeship Service, which will see over 7,000 places provided in the construction industry.

High-street companies, including Sainsbury’s, Tesco Superdrug and Phones 4u have also released plans for large-scale increases in the number of placements they offer.

Skills Secretary Mr Denham said the announcement shows the government is well on the way to making apprenticeships a mainstream option for young adults.

“We anticipate that one in five of all young people will be undertaking an apprenticeship by the end of the next decade,” he added.

The government recently announced new legislation which will mean 25 million employees will benefit from a right to request time at work to undertake training.

Each employee will be given the right to request the relevant training they need to improve their skills and to have this properly considered by their employer.