The Rail Supply Group (RSG) has launched its strategy to build growth in the UK rail industry and support exports. Fast Track to the Future sets out the sector’s long-term commitment to increase manufacturing and innovation capability and enhance productivity, skills and employment to support UK economic growth.
High Speed Rail Industry Leaders welcomed the strategy: “The Rail Supply Group and TISS reports in recent days mark a significant step forward in the development of a rail industry skills strategy.
“There is nothing of greater importance to the sector than developing our people. The RSG strategy today identifies High Speed Rail as a cross cutting theme. There is no greater opportunity to demonstrate that rail can be a high-technology and advanced industry and we should use the development of HS2 as a catalyst to invest in our skills base and transform perception of the railways, attracting once again the brightest and the best to the careers it can offer.”
“The TISS report identified the need for rail to provide around 5,000 apprenticeships per year. We believe high speed rail can deliver a significant proportion of these, and in particular a large number of the more highly skilled roles required.”
Terence Watson, Managing Director of HSRIL member company Alstom UK & Ireland and Rail Supply Group Industry co-chair said:
“The opportunities in the rail industry right now and into the foreseeable future are vast, with HS2 on the way as well as other much needed investments in upgrades, signalling and electrification.”
“But just to build these projects and then pack up at the end would miss the point. As an industry we must use them to kick-start a new wave of UK manufacturing and exporting prowess, maximising the benefit to UK PLC. That’s why we are pledging today (1 February 2016) to work together to double the industry’s export volumes, drive economic growth and create thousands of new jobs and apprenticeships across the country.”