Construction: CITB warns of skills shortages amid hopes for 180,000 new jobs over next four years

A 17 home development has been proposed for Easton. A 17 home development has been proposed for Easton.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014
6:00 AM

More than 180,000 construction jobs could be created in the next four years, although employment in the sector will still be well below pre-recession levels, according to a new report.

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The Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) predicted that housing will account for over a third of construction output between now and 2018.

The industry lost 40,000 jobs last year as public non-housing work shrank by 13%, and some areas of the country, such as the West Midlands, will continue to see job cuts, said the report.

Private house building is predicted to increase by an average of 4.6% a year to 2018.

James Wates, chairman of CITB, said: “The report shows that the economy is turning the corner and the UK construction industry will benefit from that, but growth needs to be sustainable; underpinned by long-term infrastructure projects and continued investment.

“The Government’s help-to-buy scheme has kick-started demand across the housing market and announcements on nuclear power, rail and roads have the potential to breathe fresh life into infrastructure and industry. Alongside this, we’d welcome fresh incentives to encourage house building, and the assurance that major infrastructure projects in the pipeline go ahead as planned.

“Employment in 2018 is predicted to be 196,000 below pre-recession levels, which is why measures must be taken now to ensure growth is sustained over the long-term.”

The report warned of a possible shortage of skilled workers in jobs including civil engineers and plant mechanics.

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