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Mandelson and Denham Announce Review of Engineering Construction Sector

Business Secretary Lord Mandelson and Skills Secretary John Denham today announced their Departments will conduct a review of productivity and skills in the engineering construction sector.

The review will be led by Mark Gibson, who leaves his post as Director General Business and Enterprise Group at the end of February, and report to the Business Secretary and Skills Secretary John Denham.

It will assess the state of productivity in engineering construction in the UK and identify the key inhibitors to productivity including skills aspects. It will make recommendations on ways to improve skills and productivity in the UK engineering construction industry - such as through government procurement requirements - and identify specific factors influencing success for UK-based companies bidding for UK and foreign engineering construction contracts.

The review aims to establish whether there is anything more Government or industry can do to ensure British companies succeed in winning and delivering engineering construction contracts in an increasingly competitive sector.

Announcing the review, Business Secretary Lord Mandelson said:

"Mark Gibson has extensive experience in working to improve the competitiveness of UK industry. His remit is to draw up clear recommendations for ensuring that British companies and workers are fully equipped for vital future jobs in industries like nuclear new build, and the other large scale engineering construction work. Thus ensuring that those jobs and that innovation come to the UK."

Skills Secretary John Denham said:

"We know there are major projects out there which will offer great opportunities for construction and engineering firms, like nuclear new build, rail and renewable energy projects. We need to ensure that the Government and industry do whatever it takes to build productivity and improve skills to help put British firms in the best place to compete for contracts and reap the benefits of innovation. This is just what this Commission will help us achieve."

Posted 16/02/09

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