Education and Skills Funding Agency
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UK Shipbuilding Taskforce launched to boost skills and jobs

UK wide taskforce will develop a skills strategy to support more people into rewarding careers.

The Department for Education (DfE) yesterday (10 March) calling on experts from the shipbuilding industry to apply to become a member of the first UK Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce.

Following the publication of the cross-government National Shipbuilding Strategy, which sets out a package of government measures aimed at fostering a shipbuilding renaissance across the UK, the DfE will lead work to establish a UK wide Taskforce to develop a world-leading skills strategy to support the industry.

The Taskforce will last for 18 months and aims to build a picture of the industry’s skills needs and provide solutions to skills shortages - particularly those related to new and emerging technologies and zero-emissions shipping.   Partnering industry experts with training providers, the Taskforce will collect best practice from across the shipbuilding sector to plug skills gaps and promote shipbuilding career opportunities.

Minister for Skills Alex Burghart yesterday said:

We are looking for a chair and members for our new Taskforce that will supercharge the shipbuilding industry, bringing together experts who will work together to develop a plan to plug skills gaps and get more people into rewarding jobs.

These roles are an exciting opportunity for people who have the skills, knowledge and experience to be at the forefront of this vital work, helping to level up opportunities for people across the UK and ensure our fantastic shipbuilding industry will go from strength to strength.

Working closely with the Ministry of Defence (MoD), the Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and the Department for Transport (DfT), the Taskforce will also work to ensure training providers are empowered to meet the industry’s requirements, drawing on best practice from other sectors and national skills approaches to optimise the available skills funding and opportunities for shipbuilding.

Chair of the Maritime Skills Commission, Graham Baldwin, yesterday said:

The Maritime Skills Commission welcomes the establishment of the UK Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce (UKSST) which comes at a crucial time for the sector. The Commission is committed to ensuring the maritime sector has the skills it requires for building back better and the transition to net-zero, but it is imperative that this supported by Government and industry.

Attracting and retaining a diverse pipeline of skilled workers is a priority and the Commission will work closely with the UKSST to ensure this happens. We are delighted to welcome the Chair of the UKSST onto the Commission and together we will work closely to tackle the skills challenges and opportunities now and into the future.

Applications are now open online for a chair and members for the Taskforce with experience in and a passion for shipbuilding.

Notes to Editors:

  • The Chair would be expected to commit three days per month to taskforce activities and members up to two days per month for taskforce activities.
  • The roles will be voluntary.
  • Diversity is an important consideration in members to ensure that the taskforce involves people from different backgrounds and genders. Ideally, members will represent different job roles within the shipbuilding industry to bring a range of views and experience. Geographical locations of organisations will be considered during the selection process to ensure an appropriate spread.
  • Applications for the role of Chair will close at 11:55pm on Sunday 3 April 2022.
  • Applications for members will close at 11:55pm on Sunday 17 April 2022.
  • We aim to contact the successful Chair by early May 2022 and successful members later that month, with the first meeting of the Taskforce to take place in Summer 2022.

To receive email updates on the work of the UK Shipbuilding Skills Taskforce (UKSST) and to be included in any future consultations on the work, please join our mailing list.


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