Lowestoft firm AJ Woods Engineering wins funding under new Government programme
A FIRM with offices in Lowestoft has won financial support under a new Government scheme to boost skills within the British workforce.
AJ Woods Engineering, a company specialising in marine and construction engineering, was named among 34 businesses across the UK that are to receive backing.
Under the Employment Ownership Pilot (EOP), which forms part of the Government's new industrial strategy, companies are able to shape vocational training courses to provide young people with the specific skills needed in their industry.
It is not yet clear what share of the �67million being offered to the 34 companies under the initiative will be granted to AJ Woods, but the money will be used to promote engineering as a career path in the and to create additional apprenticeships and work placements.
Announcing the EOP, Business Minister and West Suffolk MP Matthew Hancock said: 'Britain must have the skills Britain's employers need. By giving businesses the chance to shape and set their own training agenda, we're giving them the power to enrich their workforce with the skills needed for their future success.'
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The Government claimed yesterday that in its first year the EOP will generate 11,000 apprenticeships, including 4,400 for 16- to 18-year-olds, 27,000 full time vocational training places and 49,000 other training opportunities such as work placements.
But the announcement came on a day when a committee of MPs criticised a previous Government scheme aimed at boosting economic output.
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The Public Accounts Committee said the Regional Growth Fund had failed to deliver the number of jobs promised. Of �470m so far allocated from the �1.4billion fund, only �60m had reached those who had won grants, it said.