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NCE and industry leaders link up over supply chain skills

Leading names in the UK infrastructure sector have joined forces in a bid to support and strengthen the sector’s supply chain.

Top contractors and clients have linked up with NCE, the Civil Engineering Contractors Association (Ceca) and training body CITB to launch Infrastructure 21.

The programme has been set up in recognition of the crucial role that supply chain members will play in upgrading and maintaining the UK’s transport and utilities networks. Expected growth in activity in the sector along with changes in the way that work is carried out are expected to put new pressures on suppliers to ensure that their businesses are fit for future demand.

Infrastructure 21 is intended to help by providing a single clear view of the key capabilities that will be required, based on research carried out with major clients and main contractors. This will then be used as the basis of a programme of low and no-cost training to be provided at a regional level for supply chain firms from 2015 onwards.

To support this work the project team will be running a series of eight regional events to allow supply chain companies to hear more about the programme, and to contribute views about the types of support they would like to receive. The first of these events – the North East Infrastructure Supplier Conference – took place earlier this month in Durham.

Further events are planned in Yorkshire (Leeds on 20 January), East Anglia (3 February) and the North West (5 February) with other regions following in early spring. The outcomes of the research, as well as proposals for training support will be announced after the General Election in May 2015.

The project is supported by the UK Commission for Employment & Skills as part of its UK Futures supply chain management and leadership competition. Last month Infrastructure 21 was confirmed as one of six pilot projects given backing under a £850,000 competition, which aims to increase opportunities to strengthen supply chain leadership and management capability across sectors including construction, manufacturing and legal.

Infrastructure 21 supporters

Balfour Beatty

BAM Nuttall





HS2 Ltd


Lagan Construction Group

London Underground

Morgan Sindall


Skanska UK

Taylor Woodrow


  • To register your attendance at any of the events contact Ceca chief executive Alasdair Reisner on 020 7340 0454 or email

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