Unite, Britain’s biggest union, today (18 March) welcomed the announcement that government and industry will invest £2 billion over the next seven years to create a new Aerospace Technology Institute in the UK, helping to safeguard 115,000 highly skilled jobs.
The launch of the joint initiative was hailed by Unite as a vital shot in the arm for a critical industry. The new Aerospace Technology Institute will foster research and development so that the UK can develop the next generation of quieter, more efficient aircraft.
Unite national officer for aerospace and shipbuilding, Ian Waddell, said:
“Today’s announcement of a £2 billion investment into the aerospace industry is a vital shot in the arm for manufacturing.
“The UK has the second biggest aerospace industry in the world after the US. This position can only be maintained if we invest in research and technology to maintain our competitive edge.
"The creation of the Aerospace Technology Institute is to be welcomed. It must be matched with more apprenticeships and more up-skilling for the existing workforce. UK aerospace workers are amongst the best in the world – we must do all we can to ensure these highly skilled jobs are seen as a critical UK asset.
"Unite welcomes the creation of the institute and we will continue to campaign for aerospace in the UK. The industry has a massive strategic and economic importance for UK manufacturing that needs to be protected and nurtured."
Contact Ciaran Naidoo on 07768 931 315
Notes to editors:
Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with 1.5 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.