The B.C. Shipbuilding and Ship Repair Board (SSRB) announce the release of its workforce development strategy document for the B.C. shipbuilding and ship repair industry: 'Towards 2020: A BC Shipbuilding & Ship Repair Industry Workforce Strategy' is intended to inform and guide public and private investments in future labour market development initiatives over the next decade. SSRB preview the document as follows:
Mark Wilson, SSRB Chair and VP, Engineering for BC Ferries commented on the strategy’s release: “Given the critical time frame, labour market competitive forces and the rapid growth expected in BC’s shipbuilding and repair industry over the next few years, this strategy provides excellent information that will guide discussion and decisions about apprentice recruitment, trades education programs and many other essential components of our industry.”
It is forecast that throughout the next ten years alone, B.C. employers will need more than 4,000 skilled workers and trades people to meet existing and future job openings in both the shipbuilding and ship repair sector, as well as the directly affiliated metal plate and fabrication sector in professions such as welders, marine fitters, electricians, pipefitters/sprinkler installers, trades supervisors, machine fitters and marine engine mechanic occupations.
“ The release of this strategy is timely for our industry as public and private institutions begin making critical decisions that will impact B.C.’s shipbuilding and ship repair industry for many years to come,” said John Shaw, Vice President, Government Relations and Business Development – Seaspan Shipyards and Vice-Chair of the SSRB.
“Towards 2020 has been developed in consultation with many stakeholders with the goal of illuminating the way forward toward building the most effective and efficient labour market for BC’s growing shipbuilding and ship repair industry,” said Chuck Ko, President of Allied Shipbuilders. “It will guide and inform decision making in both public and private sectors as to the best way forward as this industry develops rapidly over the next few years.”
Hank Bekkering, General Manager of Point Hope Maritime noted that “The work of the SSRB provides small yards and suppliers with a multilateral approach to strategic workforce issues, and the support to proactively address challenges and harness the projected growth of the next two decades.”
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