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This page provides information and data on the Gas sector, which is one component of the Utilities industry.

The Gas sector in Australia has an estimated annual revenue of $13.98 billion and was predicted to add $4.19 billion to the Australian economy in 2017–18. The industry employs more than 13,000 in the following four sub-sectors:

  • LPG bottling and storage
  • Retailing of gas
  • Transmission of gas
  • Distribution of gas.

Vocational education and training is required for occupations involved in:

  • Transmission and distribution of natural gas
  • Handling and packaging of LPG at terminals.

Nationally recognised training for Gas sector occupations is delivered under the UEG – Gas Industry Training Package. For more information on ESI GenerationESI Transmission, Distribution and Rail and Water sectors, please visit the respective pages.

Information sourced from the Gas IRC's 2018 Skills Forecast.

All data sources are available at the end of the page.

IRC and skills forecasts

Employment trends

Employment snapshot

The employment level for the Gas Supply industry sector reached a peak of approximately 18,000 during 2014 and has declined since then. Employment levels in 2018 were at 13,400. The level is projected to fall further over the next 5 years until 2023.

Plumbers (including Gas Fitters) made up approximately 6% of the Gas Supply industry sector workforce. The employment level in this occupation is projected to increase over the next few years until 2023.

Please note: in the ANZSCO classification list Gas Fitters are categorised as a sub occupation of Plumbers (4 digit level). More detailed information and data on plumbing training and qualifications, are contained in the Construction cluster.

Training trends

Training snapshot

There were almost 1,600 program enrolments in the Gas industry training package during 2017 and approximately 220 program completions. Program enrolments more than doubled between 2014 and 2017. Program completions increased fourfold between 2014 and 2015 before decreasing by more than half during 2017. The majority of training was for the certificate III and IV in Gas Supply Industry Operations and was for the intended occupation of Gas Fitter.

Most of the enrolments were with private providers (95%). The funding source for subjects was split between government funding (62%) and domestic fee-for-service (39%). Over 60% of students who enrolled during 2017 were from Victoria, with a further 17% being from Queensland and 15% from New South Wales.

Apprenticeship commencements in the Gas Industry training package were generally less than 100 between 2010 and 2017, apart from 152 commencements in 2010 and 507 commencements in 2015. Apprenticeship completions were similarly less than 100 over the period apart from 2015 (253 completions). The majority of apprentices were training towards the intended occupation of Gas Fitter. Over 60% of apprenticeships and traineeships were reported in Queensland, followed by New South Wales (17%) and Victoria (16%).

For more data specific to your occupation, industry or training package, visit NCVER’s VET students by industry.

For more data specific to your region, visit NCVER’s Atlas of Total VET. If you are prompted to log in, select cancel and you will continue to be directed to the program.

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Industry insights

Industry insights on skills needs

As identified in the Gas IRC's 2018 Skills Forecast, the top priority skills required for the Gas sector are:

  • Operational skills
  • Infrastructure
  • Welding
  • Planning
  • Health and safety.

According to the job vacancy data, the top generic skills in demand are communication and planning skills. The top occupations in demand are Building and Engineering Technicians and Electrical Engineering Technicians.

The Gas IRC Skills Forecast highlights a few challenges and opportunities within the Gas sector:

  • New technologies are in development to reduce the impact of gas-based energy generation on the environment, such as the use of hydrogen gas, developments in Carbon Capture and Storage and harvesting renewable biogas from wastewater/landfill
  • Increasing digitisation and the ‘Internet of things’ will include more digital devices and this will require workers in this industry to diversify their skills to include how sensors are installed, monitored and maintained.

The skills forecast highlighted skills shortages in occupations such as Engineers, Infrastructural roles (Welders, Labourers), System Operators, Educators, Trainers and Assessors, and Health and Safety Professionals. Reasons for these shortages are an aging workforce with current staff retiring, competition from other organisations, wages considered too low, high staff turnover and an unattractive job and industry image. Employment is expected to grow by 2.5% to 2023.

South Australia’s Training and Skills Commission report to the Government on Industry Priority Qualifications in 2016 found that for the Electricity, Gas, Water and Waste Services industry sectors, the work and safety skills cluster was ranked by survey respondents as having the highest importance, followed by sustainability and environment and then the information and technology skills cluster.

A 2013 report by Energy Queensland on the CSG to LNG Industry Workforce stated that the sector was still developing and that consequently, education and training for this area was also underdeveloped. Because of the lack of training capability in this area, gas companies have led training and education initiatives to meet demand.

Links and resources

Data sources and notes

Department of Employment 2018, Employment Projections, available from the Labour Market Information Portal.

  • by ANZSIC 2 digit Gas Supply industry, employment projections to May 2023
  • by ANZSCO, selected occupations, employment projections to May 2023
    • 3341 Plumbers
    • 3992 Chemical, Gas, Petroleum and Power Generation Plant Operators.

Australian Bureau of Statistics 2018, Employed persons by Industry group of main job (ANZSIC), sex, state and territory, November 1984 onwards, 6291.0.55.003 - EQ06, viewed 1 November 2018 .

  • Employed total by ANZSIC 2 digit Gas Supply industry, 2000 to 2018, May Quarter.

Australian Bureau of Statistics 2017, 2016 Census – employment, income and unpaid work, TableBuilder. Findings based on use of ABS TableBuilder data.

  • Employment level by 2 digit Gas Supply industry, and 4 digit level occupations to identify the relevant VET-related occupations in the industry as a proportion of the total workforce.

Training data has been extracted from the National VET Provider Collection, Total VET student and courses from the following training package or qualifications:

  • UEG - Gas Industry Training Package.
  • Gas Supply Industry Operations
    • UEG20114 - Certificate II in Gas Supply Industry Operations
    • UEG20211 - Certificate II in Gas Industry Pipeline Operations
    • UEG30114 - Certificate III in Gas Supply Industry Operations
    • UEG30211 - Certificate III in Gas Supply Industry Operations
    • UEG40106 - Certificate IV in Gas Industry Operations
    • UEG40114 - Certificate IV in Gas Supply Industry Operations
    • UEG40311 - Certificate IV in Gas Supply Industry Operations
    • UEG50114 - Diploma of Gas Supply Industry Operations.

This includes superseded qualifications and training packages.

Data covers a range of selected student and training characteristics in the following categories and years:

  • 2014, 2015, 2017 program enrolments
  • 2014, 2015, 2017 subject enrolments
  • 2014, 2015, 2017 program completions.

Total VET students and courses data is reported for the calendar year. Program enrolments are the qualifications, courses and skill sets in which students are enrolled in a given period. For students enrolled in multiple programs, all programs are counted. Program completion indicates that a student has completed a structured and integrated program of education or training. Location data uses student residence. Subject enrolment is registration of a student at a training delivery location for the purpose of undertaking a module, unit of competency or subject. For more information on the terms and definitions, please refer to the Total VET students and courses: terms and definitions document. 

Low counts (less than 5) are not reported to protect client confidentiality.

Percentages are rounded to one decimal place. This can lead to situations where the total sum of proportions in a chart may not add up to exactly 100%.

UEG – Gas Industry Training Package apprentice and trainee data has been extracted from the National Apprentice and Trainee Collection, including:

  • 2010 to 2017 commencements
  • 2010 to 2017 completions 
  • 2017 apprentices and trainees in-training October to December 2017 collection, by qualification and state and territory of data submitter.

Priority skills data have been extracted from Gas IRC's 2018 Skills Forecast.

Job vacancy data have been extracted from Burning Glass Technologies 2018, Labor Insight Real-time Labor Market Information Tool, Burning Glass Technologies, Boston, viewed July 2018,

Data shown represent most requested generic skills, occupations and employers according to internet job postings in Australia between July 2015 and June 2018 filtered by ANZSIC and ANZSCO classification levels listed below.

  • Generic skills / Occupations
    • Labourers, Machinery Operators and Drivers, Technicians and Trades Workers
    • 27 Gas Supply.
  • Employers
    • 312999 Building and Engineering Technicians nec
    • 312312 Electrical Engineering Technician
    • 733111 Truck Driver (General)
    • 899999 Labourers nec
    • 313112 ICT Customer Support Officer
    • 27 Gas Supply.
Updated: 21 Oct 2019
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