From education to employment

But is it a Bright Economic Future for Havering or Another False Promise?

Will it be yet another case of too much talk and no action or was Hornchurch Member of Parliament, Mr James Brokenshire, telling the truth when he told businesses in Havering that redevelopments projects in East London would give the borough a brighter economic future than elsewhere in the country?

Havering is one of London’s largest Boroughs and its heart, Romford, boasts the third biggest town centre in London. Yet workers in Havering have the lowest average wage of any Borough in London because of the low skills base, and that is what needs to be addressed.

On a national basis a major increase in the number of personal insolvencies and business going bankrupt has been noticeable, and with personal debt reaching a vast £1.3 trillion, the future of the nation’s economy is looking bleak. Unemployment is on the rise once again and the latest round of major price increases in gas and electricity will affect not only household consumers but business consumers too.

MP Addressing the Issues?

Speaking at a Business Breakfast Briefing hosted by Havering College of Further and Higher Education, Mr Brokenshire said: “Businesses have seen fifteen new regulations introduced for each working day since the Government took office in 1997, regulations which have pushed up from position number four to number thirteen in the league table of competitiveness. The cost of those new regulations is estimated as £40 billion, money which should be spent on research and development and invested in business growth not in red tape.”

Nonetheless, despite the economies uninviting outlook, Mr Brokenshire believes there is a glimmer of hope for businesses in Havering. He considers the 2012 Olympic Games to be a big opportunity for new contracts and deems the proposed £200 million leisure complex at Reinham, including a casino, to create approximately 2,500 jobs and to re-characterise the South Havering corridor.

Havering College of Further and Higher Education recently opened a Construction Centre providing a way of raising the skills of local workers. Although the new centre has created a positive start, there is still much more work that needs to be done.

Businesses need to work with schools, colleges and voluntary organisations to get the right programmes in place and to encourage local people to participate in them. This will help Havering and the local economy to move forward.

Maria Vitale

Stay in touch at FE News!

Related Articles