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Construction: Skilled Workers

Question for Department for Business, Innovation and Skills

UIN 22526, tabled on 14 January 2016

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what steps his Department is taking to tackle skills shortages in the construction industry.

Answered on

25 January 2016

The Construction Industry Training Board’s (CITB) Construction Skills Network estimates224,000 new construction jobs are set to be created throughout the UK in the next five years. This means that more than 44,000 jobs could be created every year for the next five years.

According to CITB estimates, 19% of UK construction workers are aged 55+, and are set to retire in the next 10 years (406,000 people), creating equivalent replace demand.

The Government has no estimate of the number of construction workers expected to leave the industry due to ill-health.

The Government is committed to significantly increasing the quantity and quality of all apprenticeships in England to 3 million starts by 2020; the construction industry will have an important part to play in achieving this target. Development of skilled labour can only be achieved with engagement of the industry. Construction employers in England are engaged in the Trailblazer process to develop apprenticeship standards that are fit for business, and we have announced a new apprenticeships levy which will put investment in training, and apprenticeships specifically, on a long-term, sustainable footing. CITB returned over £42m last year, supporting 18,500 first, second and third year construction apprentices.

Initiatives, by the Construction Leadership Council, or through the CITB are seeking to encourage more young people into construction careers. This work includes the launch of the GO-Construct website and work with the National Careers Service and Construction Ambassadors for schools. The CITB has also developed a range of initiatives, working closely with the Department for Work and Pensions, the Armed Forces resettlement service and Local Enterprise Partnerships, to encourage experienced individuals into the sector.

Answered by

Department for Business, Innovation and Skills