CITB saved from threat of privatisation

Grant Prior 12 years ago

CITB-ConstructionSkills has fought off the threat of privatisation and will continue as a public body running training in the industry.

A separate decision on the long-term future of the industry’s training levy is currently out to consultation.

The CITB was one of scores of public sector organisations facing an uncertain future during the Government’s planned “bonfire of the quangos”.

But the training body has dodged plans to privatise it as the Government puts tackling skills shortages at the heart of its economic growth programme.

A Department for Business, Innovation and Skills statement said: “Government has agreed that the Industry Training Boards for Construction, Engineering Construction and Film will be retained as Non-Departmental Public Bodies.

“The ITBs are owned and directed by the employers in their industry and act independently of Government. The central purpose of the ITBs is to meet the skill needs of their industries through consensus support for a statutory levy.”

James Wates, Chairman of CITB-ConstructionSkills said: “We understand that in these tough times, Government has a duty to ensure it delivers best value for money – so we welcome the news that CITB-ConstructionSkills is to be retained under the Public Bodies Act.”

“We view the decision as a positive endorsement of the Levy and the work that we do to add value to our employers by ensuring industry has the right skills in place, to improve standards and contribute towards economic growth.”

The news has been welcomed by contracting groups.

Suzannah Nichol MBE, Chief Executive NSCC said: “CITB-ConstructionSkills has demonstrated that it is listening and responding to industry needs and provides a valued support in the current economic climate.

“We’re delighted to see this role recognised and look forward to continuing the excellent relationship the specialists have with CITB-ConstructionSkills”.

Stephen Ratcliffe, Director UKCG said: “The next three years will be challenging for our industry as we emerge from recession into growth, and we will need a strong and politically independent Industry Training Board working alongside us, to maintain industry’s investment in skills.”

CECA national director Rosemary Beales said: “Over many years it has played an important role in supporting the continued training of the industry to meet its skills requirements.

“However we recognise that the full future of CITB-ConstructionSkills will only be clear following the results of the current consultation on the continuation of the Levy Order.

“CECA is confident that this consultation, along with CITB- ConstructionSkills’s own moves to reform itself, will deliver an organisation that is geared up to help industry tackle the skills challenges that will face the industry in the years to come.”

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