HL Deb 12 April 1978 vol 390 cc777-8WA

asked Her Majesty's Government:

To list the activities of the Training Services Agency which are not exclusively concerned with manufacturing industries.


I am informed by the Manpower Services Commission, which has from 1st April 1978 taken direct responsibility for all those functions previously delegated to the Training Services Agency, that it works closely with and pays the operating expenses of the six industrial training boards which are not exclusively concerned with manufacturing industry: Air Transport and Travel, Ceramics, Glass and Mineral Products, Construction, Distributive, Hotel and Catering and Road Transport.

In sectors not covered by industrial training hoards, the MSC promotes good working relationships with bodies representative of particular "services", or, where none exist, in assisting in their creation and development. At present the following industries and services are covered: banking, insurance and finance; port transport, shipping, fishing, forestry, agriculture, freight forwarding, hairdressing and nationalised industries concerned with energy and transport. The Manpower Services Commission provides financial aid to supplement the funds of ITBs and other national training organisations so that they may assist firms to undertake key training activities. In conjunction with ITBs and other national training organisations it administers the special counter cyclical programme of support for training in industry, which operates both within and outside the manufacturing sector.

Under its Training Opportunities Scheme the MSC offers individuals training in a wide range of skills. Many of the courses, which include clerical, commercial and managerial skills, equip trainees for employment either within or outside the manufacturing sector.

Direct training services are also available to service industries, and include training within industry courses, the Mobile Instructors' Service, instructor training colleges and sponsored training schemes in Skillcentres.

In addition, the MSC undertakes a programme of research, development and advisory work to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of training. This is of interest to a wide spectrum of industry and commerce.

House adjourned at twenty-three minutes before eleven o'clock.