Scottish Government unveils modern apprenticeships for fishing industry

Richard Lochhead: new entrants are 'life blood of fishing industry'
Richard Lochhead: new entrants are 'life blood of fishing industry'
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THE Scottish Government today launched a new modern apprenticeship training programme to give young people the chance to enter Scotland’s £500 million a year fishing industry.

• Modern apprenticeship will give young people the chance to enter Scotland’s £500m a year fishing industry

• Richard Lochhead keen for new entrants to be future life blood of fishing industry

The Modern Apprenticeship in Sea Fishing scheme will offer young people, aged 16 to 24, an entry route into a career in fishing. And it is hoped that up to 20 young people will start their careers as trawlermen each year through the programme.

Richard Lochhead, the Scottish Fisheries Secretary, announced the new scheme during a visit to the port of Buckie on the Moray Firth.

He said: “New entrants are the future life blood of the fishing industry and if we are to secure the future of fishing in Scotland we need to do all we can make a career in fishing more accessible for young people.

“We need to ensure that the fleet can access the skills and manpower needed to be successful. Therefore the launch of the new apprenticeship scheme marks a very positive start to the year for Scottish fishing.”

He added: “The fishing industry is hugely important to our coastal communities and this investment in modern apprenticeships demonstrates how government and industry are working together in close partnership to ensure fishing continues to be a viable way of life for many generations to come.”

25,000 modern apprenticeships in every year of Scottish Parliament

Angela Constance, the Minister for Youth Employment, explained: “We are investing in 25,000 modern apprenticeships in every year of this Parliament. With more than 100 potential career pathways now open via a modern apprenticeship, I am delighted to welcome potential young fishermen and women into the fold.

“I have been clear with Scotland’s enterprise community over the past year that taking on a young person can add real spark to a business and having someone in right at the start of their career fosters loyalty and innovation. Scotland’s fishing industry is no exception, and I would call upon the sector to consider taking on a modern apprentice.”

Derek Cardno, the marine safety and training officer for the Scottish Fishermen’s Federation, welcomed the new scheme. He said: “The apprenticeship gives industry the opportunity to attract new entrants from across Scotland into the industry.

“For decades it has been the fishing communities where traditionally crews have come from, but now we can offer school leavers from all areas of Scotland an exciting structured career in a very dynamic industry. The focus for industry in designing the new structure was to enhance the training of new entrants, which will, in turn, make the industry a safer place to work.”