Apprenticeships will contribute £34bn to UK economy this year

Thursday November 27th, 2014

New research from the Centre for Economics and Business Research (Cebr) reveals that apprenticeships will contribute £34bn to the UK economy in 2014.This figure includes gains to the economy from higher wages, business profits and taxes of £31bn per year, an estimated reduction in unemployment benefit payments of £370m per year, and benefits to organisations while training apprentices of £1.9bn per year (in 2014 prices). The ratio of benefits to costs of apprenticeships is £21 for the national economy for each £1 of public money spent.

In addition the research shows that the number of people starting an apprenticeship each year has grown from around 100,000 in 1950 to more than 440,000 people in 2013-14, and the government is on course to deliver in excess of 2 million apprenticeships in the lifetime of this parliament.

If this upward trend in recruitment continues, the national economy stands to gain £50bn by 2025 and £101bn by 2050. If the number of employers taking on apprentices rises still further, these benefits could increase by £8bn in 2050, giving a total gain of £109bn.

This research is published ahead of a ‘Made by apprentices 1914 – 2014’ event taking place today on board HMS St Albans, marking 100 years of apprenticeships. Employers who have been delivering apprenticeships for 100 years will attend, along with some of their apprentices.

Employers will include the Ministry of Defence, the largest employer of apprentices in the UK, large independent retailer the Lincolnshire Co-op, leading engineering support service provider Babcock International Group and Merseyside shipbuilder Cammell Laird.

‘Made by apprentices 1914-2014’ will recognise all the employers taking part in the Centenary Apprenticeship Programme and the contribution of apprentices past and present.

Minister of State for Skills Nick Boles said:

“Today’s celebration of a hundred years of apprenticeships demonstrates how they have long played a key role in the workforce and commemorates the contribution apprentices have made to employers and the nation. Apprenticeships are at the heart of the Government’s drive to equip people with the skills that employers need to grow and compete.”

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