The UK Chamber of Shipping and the Merchant Navy Training Board (MNTB) jointly hosted an Apprenticeship Seminar on the 11th October.
The purpose of the event was to brief attendees from the industry about the Apprenticeship Levy and how apprenticeships can play a role in the shipping industry.
The Levy which will come into effect in April 2016, has caused a great deal of concern across industry due to lack of clarity around how the levy may be implemented, how companies already training or looking to train apprentices might be affected and the potential differences in how the Levy will be implemented in England and the devolved regions.
Recent guidelines from the Department for Education have
begun to provide clarity on some of these issues. It’s understood that for non-levy paying employers the government has proposed that employers co-invest 10% of the funding costs, with government funding 90%.
The guidance also proposed that there should be 15 funding bands, ranging from £1,500 to £27,000.
In addition, as an incentive for employers to take on 16-18 year old apprentices, an additional payment of £1,000 will be made to the employers and a further £1,000 payment to training providers.
Meanwhile, in Scotland
it is mooted that the Levy will operate differently in certain aspects, notably the flexibility in using Levy fund for other types of training.
During the seminar, Head of the MNTB, Glenys Jackson highlighted that apprenticeships available to shipping companies are not limited to seafaring roles, and encouraged the industry to consider taking on apprentices in other areas of their businesses such as Business Administration, Team-Leading and Management apprenticeships as a means of adding value right across organisations
The MNTBs Training Development Manager, Ibrahim Ismail highlighted the ongoing work of the MTNB in developing Ratings Apprenticeship standards covering technical deck, engine room and hospitality roles such as the Maritime Caterer and Onboard services.
With bursary options available for Rating apprenticeships, and schemes to encourage employers to take on 16-18 year olds as apprenticeships with payments on completion – there are many incentives for employers to do so.