We must rebalance the UK economy whatever the economic conditions
23 January 2013
Here Juergen Maier, Managing Director of Siemens UK Industry Sector, explains why the UK has no choice but to move forward in order for the economy to recover.
Somebody asked me if it was possible to talk of rebalancing the UK economy in the face of an economic storm and whether the Government policies in place were sufficient to allow this to happen. I replied that the current economic conditions make it doubly important that we should aim to redress the balance towards manufacturing, which at the moment only stands at 12% of GDP compared with a European average of 25% and a world average of 31%.
As for government action, we have renewed support for apprenticeships and vocational training. For instance, there are a number of University Technical Colleges that are being set up to offer 14-19 year olds the opportunity to take a full time, technically-oriented course of study.
Each one is equipped to the highest standard and sponsored by a university or college. Thirteen new University Technical Colleges are to be opened across England including The Black Country University Technical College, which opened in the West Midlands in partnership with Siemens.
Another key initiative is the High Value Manufacturing Catapult which, in October 2011, brought seven partners together to form the new Catapult centre, bringing together their expertise in different and complementary areas of high value manufacturing.
The new centre provides an integrated capability and embraces all forms of manufacture using metals and composites, in addition to process manufacturing technologies and bio-processing. The High Value Manufacturing Catapult will draw on excellent university research to accelerate the commercialisation of new and emerging manufacturing technologies.
At Siemens we are delighted to be able to support both these initiatives and several others which are engaging with our sector
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