In order to encourage companies to hire apprentices, an initiative to support the creation of apprenticeship positions was created in 1999. It provides reimbursement of 27% of the apprenticeship allowance for a DT (technician’s diploma) or DAP (vocational aptitude diploma) training and 40% for a CCP (vocational capacity certificate) training, as well as a refund of the employer’s share of social security costs for the apprentice (SCL, 2012b).

Apprentices receive an apprenticeship allowance (indemnité d’apprentissage) which varies depending on the VET programme they follow and which is fixed by a decree. This allowance is paid by the employer, although to encourage companies to hire apprentices (aide à la promotion de l’apprentissage), they may apply to the governmental employment fund to be reimbursed a part of the apprenticeship allowance: it covers all the non-wage labour costs as well as 27% of the allowance for DT (diplôme de technicien, technician’s diploma) or DAP (diplôme d’aptitude professionnelle, vocational aptitude diploma) apprentices, and 40% for CCP (certificate de capacité professionnelle, vocational capacity certificate) apprentices.

Apprentices following their in-company training at the Public National Centre for Continuing Vocational Education and Training (Centre National de la Formation Professionnelle Continue, CNFPC) only receive 60% of the designated allowance which is paid by the employment fund.

Apprentices following an apprenticeship for adults (apprentissage pour adultes) receive the minimum wage for unskilled workers as defined by law (EUR 1922.96 by 1.01.2016). The training company in this case only pays the designated apprentice allowance fixed by decree, the difference being assumed by the employment fund. Furthermore, the company will be refunded the non-wage labour costs for unskilled workers.

In order to further promote vocational training, apprentices receive a bonus for each accomplished year of their apprenticeship, paid by the employment fund.