BAE Apprenticeships and the Skills Crisis:

We are reproducing the County Press article as an example for how the neo-liberals and its Government are attempting to “solve” the existential crisis. It shows that the importance of wealth creation through developing, instead of wrecking, the productive forces through increasing the essential manufacturing base. In this case what is being addressed is the skills base.

Proper apprenticeships, in the traditional manner, are now referred to as “advanced”. This skills training is in an existing manufacturing establishment, probably Britain’s largest (military based) company, itself still on the market for sale as the recent sale to the French company EADS fell through. Manufacturing, as a proportion of GDP, stands at around 10%, whereas it should be at least 25% in a reasonable proportional balanced economy. Cameron’s, “Productivity Drive”, although a recognition of the ‘Growth versus Austerity’ argument, is more than likely to exacerbate the existential capitalist crisis than solve it. This is because exploitation to increase value added, is more likely to create conflict. Instead of paying the Rich, investment in the social economy and social programmes is the alternative. Are there any plans to increase investment in manufacturing? No there are none. So the productive forces hands will be tied and eventually the uneducated and inexperienced skills base will decline even lower.

Apprentices given new opportunity at BAE

By Sara Bryce
Monday, May 25, 2015

ENGINEERING and manufacturing apprenticeships will have an opportunity to train with BAE Systems on the Isle of Wight.

The Cowes-based defence, security and aerospace company hopes to increase the number of apprentices in the engineering industry by taking part in the government-funded Employment Ownership Programme.

As well as taking on 100 apprentices at its Maritime Services business, BAE Systems will also support the recruitment and training of 20 apprentices on behalf of other local employers.

Starting this September, the apprentices will complete a four-year advanced apprenticeship in engineering, which will set them up for a host of roles, including electrical and mechanical fitters, welders, fabricators, outfitters, pipe workers and joiners.
The first year of the course will be spent at BAE Systems’ Skill Development Centre at HM Naval Base in Portsmouth.

Nick Sibley, engineering director at BAE Systems Maritime Services, said: “One of the biggest threats to the UK’s competitiveness is the shortage of skilled engineers. Boosting the supply of future engineers through apprenticeships is essential if the sector is to succeed, and if the government is to achieve its vision of rebalancing the UK economy towards manufacturing.”

Local businesses interested in recruiting apprentices through the scheme and to find out more can contact Hayley Tod on

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