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Meeting the Challenges of the Future

There are challenging times ahead: a skills shortage with an ageing workforce, ageing energy infrastructure and the imperative to reduce carbon emissions.

Skills shortfall

Demand for the industry workforce is forecast to rise by at least 5% a year for the next few years and, in some cases by as much as 15%. To meet demand and replace retirees, the industry needs to recruit, develop and upskill around 45,000 people by 2014:

  • 5,000 graduate entrants, mainly engineers
  • 12,000 apprentices, craft, technician, maintenance, design, project control
  • 10,000 current semi-skilled and craft workers need up-skilling
  • 8,000 engineers need skill enhancement in project management
  • 10,000 mature entrants needed across the skills range.

The skills shortages most prevalent are:

  • Skilled mechanical and electrical plant repair and maintenance
  • New construction and project engineering
  • Design and project management.


ECITB meeting the skills shortfall challenge

Working closely with companies such as Aker Kvaerner, Foster Wheeler, AMEC and Alstrom, the ECITB is improving the quality and number of skilled personnel. The focus is on apprenticeships, upskilling and project management training for more than 7,500 people each year.

The report Securing Engineering Construction Skills for the Future outlines ECITB plans to deliver new entrants to the industry:

  • More students through initiatives such as the Construct Your Life/Engineer Your Future School Roadshow which reaches more than 35,000 pupils a year.  
  • Bright new entrants through Diplomas, Apprenticeships and Work-based Learning Schemes. Working closely with companies.
  • Degree students through new Masters courses leading to Chartered Engineer Status.
  • A new scheme for ex-military personnel.

In the next 5 years, ECITB will be investing £100 million in training, with additional Government funding of more than £70 million.

Pledge your support to the ECITB Skills & Training Charter.



  • Tony Featherstone
  • Director of International Operations & Commercial
  • Room 504, Arab Tower
  • Hamdan Street
  • P.O. Box: 45117
  • Abu Dhabi
  • United Arab Emirates
  • UK Mobile: +447875 461114
  • UAE Mobile: +971506-144693
  • http://www.ecitb.org.uk/
  • 01923 402133

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