Industrial Strategy to boost skills and training in UK

The industrial strategy was one of Theresa May’s big ideas after she became prime minister in the aftermath of the Brexit vote

Construction wins government backing for productivity boost

CIWM today welcomed the launch of the Industrial Strategy White Paper and within it references to a range of issues of deep concern to our sector. Battery storage will take up £246m of that investment, with a £45m competition in place to establish a battery research centre.

"We welcome the strategy's plan to champion apprenticeships, and in particular the announcement of new funding of £60m to support apprenticeship take-up by young people and poorer families from disadvantaged areas", she said.

"Powered by new technology, new industries are being created, existing ones changing and the way we live our lives - as workers, citizens and consumers - transformed".

The government is calling two major new investments in the United Kingdom by pharma firms a "huge vote of confidence" in its approach to industrial strategy.

The Government has released its Industrial Strategy with a focus on four "growth industries", set for billions of pounds in extra investment.

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Business secretary Greg Clark called the strategy "an unashamedly ambitious vision for the future of our country", arguing it will help address four "grand challenges" facing the UK.

Sector deals: Partnerships between government, business and government to pursue innovation in life sciences, artificial intelligence, the automotive industry and the construction sectors.

The Industrial Strategy points to ambitions outlined previously in October's Clean Growth Strategy, and further strengthens the government's commitment to zero avoidable waste and doubling resource productivity by 2050.

In regards to infrastructure, the Government has pledged to invest £400m in EV charging points and a further £100m to extend the plug-in vehicle grant, as first revealed in the Chancellor's Budget last Wednesday.

The National Productivity Investment Fund will be increased to £31 billion, supporting investments in transport, housing and digital infrastructure, alongside driving more than £20 billion of investment in innovative and high potential businesses.

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A further £20bn will be help support innovative and high-potential businesses, with £2.5bn going towards a new Investment Fund.

The strategy adds, "Embedding AI across the United Kingdom will create thousands of good quality jobs and drive economic growth". The green paper was announced to much fanfare earlier this year, however our recent Future Attitudes study, which surveyed over a thousand senior SME decision makers across the United Kingdom, revealed an astonishing lack of awareness about the Strategy, with fewer than three in ten (29 per cent) small and medium-sized enterprises claiming to have heard about it...

Molho's thoughts were echoed by Greenpeace UK head of energy Hannah Martin, who said: "Ministers are right to recognise clean energy as a top priority for British industry and regional regeneration".

"While it's pleasing to see steps being taken to invest in the fourth industrial revolution, much more needs to be done to encourage the take-up and development of skills that will be needed to see it through. The creation of an independent council with teeth to monitor progress will help this".

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