Posts tagged skilful workforce

Government to promote offshore wind investment

Government to promote offshore wind investmentBusiness and Energy Minister Michael Fallon has announced the creation of an Offshore Wind Investment Organisation (OWIO) to boost levels of inward investment and to further stimulate jobs in the UK offshore wind industry.

The OWIO is expected to boost the UK offshore wind industry alongside Government support for three offshore wind innovation projects as well as pave the way for new employment opportunities in the trades.

Energy Minister, Michael Fallon said: “Offshore wind is a major success story for the UK, and we want to boost levels of inward investment. This will be an important part of our industrial strategy for the sector later this year, and we are creating the Offshore Wind Investment Organisation to drive that activity.

“We already have more installed offshore wind than anywhere else in the world, and this brings enormous economic benefit to our shores, supporting thousands of skilled jobs.

“Through the formation of this industry-led partnership and through our support for innovation projects, we will boost the positive benefits that the offshore wind sector can bring to the UK economy.”

The OWIO is one of the recommendations of the forthcoming industrial strategy and will be headed by a senior industry figure. The organisation will be a partnership between industry and Government, established by UK Trade & Investment, that will complement the work of DECC and BIS in delivering the Government-wide offshore investment objectives.

Michael Fallon also announced three innovation projects that Government will support as part of Offshore Wind Components Technologies Scheme:

  • Power Cable Services Limited, based in Kent, have been awarded a £540,000 grant towards their high voltage subsea cable jointing technology project
  • Aquasium Technology Ltd with partners Burntisland Fabrications Ltd and TWI have been awarded a grant of £769,600 towards their cost-effective fabrication project.
  • Wind Technologies Ltd (Cambridge) have been awarded a £728,355 grant to design, manufacture and test an innovative 5MW medium speed drive train concept.

The Minister announced the support during his keynote speech to Renewable UK’s Offshore Wind 2013 conference in Manchester today.

Industry delegates at the conference are also able to attend the first ‘Share Fair’ session enabling them to hear about investment opportunities from major players in the market. This addresses one of the priorities identified by the offshore wind industrial strategy partnership between Government and industry.

What is your reaction to the Government plans to boost levels of inward investment and create new jobs in the UK offshore wind industry? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raise your voice on our Facebook and Twitter pages. 

Construction Starts on 100 Cheapside in the City of London

Construction Starts on 100 Cheapside in the City of LondonSkanska UK has been selected to deliver a £28 million construction contract on the redevelopment of 100 Cheapside in the City of London.

Work on the 18-month contract is set to start immediately, paving the way for new jobs in the building industry and boosting the trades.

The scheme will see the demolition and construction of a ten-storey commercial building for its client, Ten Times Ten Development, a joint venture between Quadrant Estates and City of London.

The development will include 9,000 sq ft of retail accommodation, which is likely to attract major brands looking for exposure to the City retail market on this prime retail thoroughfare.

Director at Quadrant Estates, Graham Tyler, said: “We have set high environmental targets for 100 Cheapside, and as a leader in sustainability Skanska is best placed to meet these.

“We are working with them on another City development and are confident that both will be delivered to a high standard.”

100 Cheapside will be a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ building, which will offer office floor plates of up to 11,000 sq ft over 10 floors, targeting core City occupiers looking for Grade A space.

Paul Heather, Managing Director at Skanska for London and the South East said: “Skanska is delighted to have won this contract in the heart of London.

“Winning this in such competitive market conditions is a true testament to our commitment to a more sustainable future and our client’s confidence that they can use our knowledge and skills to achieve a building which meets the high environmental standards of today and for years to come.”

What is your reaction to the £28 million construction contract by Skanska in the City of London? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook and Twitter pages.  

Perth is given a £650, 000 Grand ahead of the Queen’s Visit

As reported by the BBC and the Press Association today, Scotland’s newest city has been awarded £650, 000 to restore and repair its historic buildings.

The grant has been given after Perth was granted a city status, which will be officially recognised during a visit by the Queen in July this year.

The funding granted to Perth will be spread over a period of three years. It will aim to safeguard and enhance city’s historic environment whilst contributing to the creation of new jobs and sustainable economic growth, Historic Scotland said.

Making the announcement, the Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, Fiona Hyslop said: “The grant from Historic Scotland will help secure Perth’s outstanding built heritage, enhancing the city and preserving a sense of place.

“Improving the historic properties will also encourage tourism, promote the use of traditional building skills, and make the city of Perth a better place to live, work and invest in.

“Using sustainable materials to adapt existing buildings will also help support the historic environment’s transition to a low carbon economy.”

What’s your reaction to the future renovation which will take place in Perth? Can you name other similar cities which need such investment?  Share your thoughts by commenting here or raising your voice on our Facebook page.

A Skilful Workforce is Vital for Economic Growth – Says the CBI

Business leaders at the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) have called on the government to bring forward a higher level of investment to the construction sector in a bid to stimulate the building engineering industry and create hundreds of thousands of new jobs.

In a report published by the CBI, it has become clear that construction businesses want to see more funds for repair, maintenance and improvement works which will create jobs and stimulate economic growth.

The report says: “The government has a ready-made mechanism to tackle the current activity gap and create jobs in the immediate future by stimulating repair, maintenance and improvement (RMI) work.

“RMI work can deliver jobs quickly on the ground across all regions, including creating openings for unemployed young people as its nature offers ‘hands-on’ jobs suitable for school-leavers.

“In addition, RMI projects generally have the advantage of shorter procurement timescales.”

The CBI is also calling on central and local government to “ensure that existing and planned RMI schemes such as the Priority School Building Programme and Green Deal are swiftly and competently delivered.”

The report states: “Developing more specific pipelines of construction work (for three to five years ahead for example) would help attract private sector investment locally and support the creation of local construction jobs.

“Knowing what’s around the corner in any given location would enable firms of all sizes across the supply chain to better identify, prioritise and plan their investment, striking up constructive dialogue with local stakeholders early on.”

The CBI’s Action for Jobs Progress Report also calls the government for fresh action on:

  • Aligning school funding with employment as well as academic outcomes
  • Boosting school-business links in every local community with local organisers in every area making it easier to get involved in leading schemes
  • Making work experience a statutory right for 14 to 16 year-olds
  • Investing more in apprenticeships – both at a higher level and in pre-apprenticeship courses which help young people without skills get on high-quality training schemes
  • Introducing a comprehensive ‘readiness-for-work’ assessment at Job Centre Plus, to help people focus on returning to work.

What is your reaction to the CBI’s call for a further investment in the construction industry which will prove vitally important for the creation of new jobs? Do you agree with UK’s top business organisation?

The Get Britain Building Programme Will Unlock Funding to House Builders

Housing developers facing financial difficulties will be able to bid for at least £100 million of investment to get work restarted on stalled sites under the Get Britain Building Programme, the Homes and Community Agency (HCA) has revealed.     

The Get Britain Building programme was introduced in November 2011 as part of Government’s Housing Strategy for England to boost construction activity by delivering more than 15, 000 new homes.

Following the announcement by the HCA, housebuilders with as few as 15 houses, which have been suspended, will have the chance to put their bid forward until 25 July 2012.

Development is underway on sites in Ashford, Kent and Bath whilst funding has been allocated to 40 schemes set to deliver more than 3,200 new homes once contracts are agreed.

Chief Executive at the HCA Pat Ritchie said: “It has been a tremendous effort from the industry and the HCA to get this programme up and running, and with more than £110 million allocated I look forward to seeing these developments progressing to build much needed housing.

“We will continue to be thorough in our due diligence, and will only support those schemes backed by the community, which boost the local economy and provide a secure and value for money investment for the taxpayer.” – added Ms Ritchie.

Do you think the new funding as part of the Get Britain Building programme will help your business and boost construction activity in England? Share your thoughts by commenting here or raining your voice on our Facebook page.  

Smart Meters to Help Energy Efficiency and Create New Jobs


As reported in the Electronics Weekly Magazine, most of Europe’s electricity meters are expected to be replaced with new smart meters, introducing more precise measurement for electricity consumption and improved energy efficiency for households.

Electrical engineers and qualified electricians will benefit from the “technological switch” which is likely to boost employment across the electrical engineering sector.  New technologies in the electrical industry will require a skilful workforce to meet the increasing demand for efficient energy systems.

Steve Drumm, Marketing Development Manager at Omron Electronic Components for Europe, believes introducing new technologies in the energy industry will deliver benefits for consumers and help businesses make huge savings.

Manufacturers across Europe and the rest of the world are working towards improving key characteristics of switching power elements that manage the supply and measurement of electricity to consumers.

Smart meters are reported to require control relays which manage the supply of electricity. That way they can make significant savings towards the energy consumption of commercial and residential premises.

What do you think of the new electricity meters that will consume little or no electricity? Do you welcome the transition from old towards new meters and the boost to employment in the energy sector? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below or adding your voice on our Facebook Page

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