14 September, 2020
WCM continues to work toward construction readiness status, and as part of this has undertaken a major project review which has included a number of modifications and updates. Part of this is reflected within the updated planning information submitted to CCC and due for review in the near future.
This review work has allowed WCM to further refine and focus upon key details of the project delivery and operation, with the appointment of the first critical key suppliers. An assessment process is currently being undertaken with the aim of selecting local contractors and businesses to further support the project, thus ensuring local content is prioritised wherever possible to do so.
Attached is the first of a series of project factsheets which reflect the current key statistics; this one relates to employment.
These statistics demonstrate that WCM’s project aligns completely with the UK Government initiative of ‘A Plan for Jobs’ and the unprecedented impacts to both Cumbria and the UK caused by Covid-19, with the forecasts of unemployment indicating a rate of around 8% (or higher) by the end of 2020. As a result, the creation of highly-paid, multi-generation jobs, with major indirect job creation and stimulus into the local supply chain, is more critical than ever before. Some supporting key information includes:
- Cumbria ranked highest in a recent ‘employment at risk’ assessment (undertaken by Grant Thornton in August 2020)
- Total UK unemployment in 2019 was 3.85% (1.3 million people)
- Forecast UK unemployment by the end of 2020 is anticipated to be around 8% (more than 2.7 million people)
- The total Cumbrian workforce in March 2020 was 242,000
- Total Cumbrian population in 2019 was 500,012 (with 295,400 aged 16 to 64)
- The North West unemployment rate is higher than the wider UK rate with the potential to be more than 10% by the end of 2020
- There are only 55 businesses in Cumbria employing more than 250 people (<20% of workforce)
To download a copy of WCM’s Project Facts Update – Part 1, please click here
We will issue Part 2 (Economics) next week.