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Event to boost North East industry skills

Date 7 Nov 2007

Over 150 industry leaders, MPs, HR and training specialists are expected to attend a process industries event in Sunderland tomorrow. The North East Process Industries Cluster (NEPIC) Annual Regional Skills and Education event takes place at The Stadium of Light. NEPIC aim to use the event to highlight the current level of investment in the local process industries and get across the message that the process sector can provide long term and exciting career opportunities.

The event programme will address how to attract young people and adults to gain the skills required to work in the sector. The conference provides an opportunity for attendees to hear exactly where the critical skills challenges are impacting on the Industry and also about the solutions that are being developed.

Stan Higgins, NEPIC Chief Executive, said: "Here in the North East this sector represents over 25% of the whole regional economy with jobs that create almost 50% more value to our economy than the average UK employee. "It is vital that we rise to the challenge and attract more people, and the best people, into science & engineering to keep the UK and the North East at the forefront of this globally important industry."

George Ritchie, VP of SembCorp Utilities and Chair of the NEPIC Skills and Education Team, said: "Process Industry Companies are beginning to step up their activities in the securing and training of new talent. "This year we have seen 50% more chemical engineers and 28% more chemists beginning their honours degree courses across the UK. We still need to increase even on this success and also generate many more vocational routes into industry for Engineering and Scientific Technicians."

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