Maritime Industry Contributes £116bn To UK Economy

A new report, commissioned by Maritime UK, has found that the maritime industry contributed £116bn to the UK economy in 2019. Hellenic News reports that The Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) published its findings on behalf of the umbrella body for the UK’s maritime sector.

The economic analysis took into account all of the major industries within the sector, including shipping, which generated the highest turnover of £49m. Marine engineering and science contributed over £34bn, while maritime business services contributed £13.7bn, and ports contributed £10bn.

In addition to the contribution to the economy, the industry supported over 1 million jobs in 2019, with an average salary which was 30% higher than the UK national average. The sector has grown by 35% since 2010, and is bouncing back strongly from the impact of the pandemic, with further predicted growth of 16% by 2025.

Sarah Kenny OBE, Maritime UK chair, said: “As an island nation, maritime surrounds all of us, and its impact is felt in every community across the UK. We saw that during the pandemic, through the provision of vital supplies, and we are seeing it now as we bounce back. With maritime driving the net zero agenda and providing skilled jobs in all corners of the country.”

Robert Courts MP, Maritime Minister, said: “Maritime is vital to the UK’s economy and to levelling up the country as a whole. Its role was made even clearer during the pandemic and this report serves to underline that contribution.”

He added: “I am incredibly proud of our industry and through our joint vision for the future, Clean Maritime Plan and Maritime 2050, we will work together to continue building a sector which benefits all.”

Meanwhile, the Maritime Skills Commission has launched a new Skills for Green Jobs paper. The green economy is presenting growing opportunities within the maritime sector, in areas including ports, shipping, leisure marine, engineering, and science. It is estimated that an additional 1.7 million jobs will be required in the next ten years.

Professor Graham Baldwin, Chair of the Maritime Skills Commission, said: “This position paper sets the Maritime Skills Commission on the path to ensuring that green jobs, and the skills required for them, can be properly understood in order for the workforce, both future and existing, to be skilled, reskilled and upskilled in order to transition to net zero.”

He added: “While this position paper sets out the Commission’s 7 key actions, we will ensure that the skills for green jobs agenda will underpin all activities rather than being a defined activity in its own right.”

The report acknowledges the need to attract new workers to the sector, and develop new skill sets, to keep up to date with the fast pace of technological change. It also recognises the need of both employers and training and qualification providers to meet the challenges that lie ahead, as the sector prepares to tackle carbon net zero targets.

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