HC Deb 16 December 1986 vol 107 cc518-9W
36. Mr. Eastham

asked the Paymaster General if he will make a statement on the extent of skill shortages in different regions of the United Kingdom.

Mr. Trippier

Information is available from a number of sources about the difficulties encountered by some employers in recruiting employees with the particular experience and competence they seek, including an analysis of vacancies notified to jobcentres which have been outstanding for more than two months. In April 1986, the latest date for which results are available, this analysis showed that such difficulties occurred in all regions, and, as a proportion of all outstanding vacancies, varied from 2.1 per cent. in the north-west to 4.2 per cent. in the west midlands and the south-east. This general picture is confirmed by other surveys.

46. Mr. Stan Thorne

asked the Paymaster General what steps he is taking to tackle skill shortages in engineering.

Mr. Trippier

Whilst the primary responsibility for indentifying and meeting skill requirements rests with the industry, the Government are helping through a range of initiatives including two-year YTS, the job training programme and the engineering and technology programme.