232,000 jobs to be created in construction over the next five years

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The growth of the construction sector is set to boost the number of jobs by nearly quarter of a million over the next five years…

Given the number of new infrastructure projects in the pipeline during the course of this parliament it should come as no surprise the construction sector is set to grow.

New forecasts from the Construction Industry Training Board (CITB) have predicted a growth of 2.5 per cent between 2016 and 2020.

This growth will undoubtedly increase the number of jobs, with some 232,000 expected to be created during the period. This will include a total of 9,400 new office based roles each year, alongside 2,800 bricklayers and 4,320 carpenters.

While growth is good news for the sector it also presents problems. A skills shortage is inevitable in the future, with the number of new apprentices taken on failing to meet current demand for workers. The CITB called on the government to increase the number of apprenticeships in a bid try to plug the gap.

Policy Director Steve Radley said: “All types of training, and especially apprenticeships, will be vital to delivering this pipeline of work.

“This positive forecast should inspire more people to start apprenticeships, and more firms to take them on.”

Major infrastructure projects across the UK are thought to be the main driver of growth. Works such as Crossrail, HS2, and a number of new nuclear power stations are expected to push year-on-year infrastructure growth by 6.1 per cent.

Forecasts also predict the commercial construction sector will grow by 3.4 per cent a year, with housebuilding also expected to return to pre-recession levels by the end of the period.

Wales is expected to see the highest level of year-on-year growth, at 7.1 per cent, followed by the South West at 4.4 per cent, London at 3.5 per cent, and the North West at 2.6 per cent.

Radley added: “We can’t build the Britain we want without growing apprenticeships – and the careers they lead onto.

“That’s why it is vital that these new statistics, showing solid, sustained growth, inspire more people join the construction industry.

“We also want to attract workers who have left the industry to return, and upskill those currently in the sector, so we can deliver major projects and new housing faster and better.”

Read the full report here: ‘Industry Insights: Construction Skills Network Forecast 2016-2020’

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