Five new national skills academies to be launched

Five new national skills academies, covering rail engineering, logistics, green building services, biotechnology, and composites, are to be launched, the government announced today.

The new bodies, funded by £12m of public investment matched by the private sector, bring the total of national skills academies (NSAs) to 18.

The NSA for Power will be led by sector skills council Energy & Utility Skills, with support from more than 15 employers including E-ON, EDF Energy and National Grid. It will benefit from a planned £2.9m public investment alongside £3.9m from employers.

The rail engineering sector NSA will receive nearly £3m of government investment through the Skills Funding Agency and has the support of organisations including Network Rail, Transport for London, Rail Freight Group, the Rail Industry Association and the Association of Train Operating Companies.

Employers including Unipart, Denby Transport and Port of Tilbury are supporting the logistics sector NSA, which will receive more than £4m of public funding.

The NSA in the green building services sector will co-ordinate skills training in design, installation and maintenance of solar panel technology, heat and power, and wind and micro-generation. It will receive nearly £3m government investment through the Skills Funding Agency.

The expanded capacity of the NSA for Process Industries will see it create two new hubs for biotechnology and composites, with more than £2m public investment and will work in partnership with employers and other organisations in this key growth sector.

Business secretary Peter Mandelson said: “We are investing in the industries where employers’ need is greatest – tens of thousands of people working in these industries, the consumers they serve and the UK as a whole will see the benefit.

“New academies and investment by employers, in partnership with colleges and the education sector, will create the best training that gives people the skills they need to boost their careers and drive the economy forward.”

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