Cordant Focus

Category: Industry Sector Insights


The value of marine industries to the UK & why become a marine engineer?

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A marine engineer is in charge of everything mechanical, electrical, or structural on a ship which may range from computers to the crankshaft, air conditioning to refrigerators, doors to windshield wipers thus it is the marine engineer who will fix it.

The ‘marine industries’ manufacture and provide support services in the Leisure, Naval, Commercial, Offshore Renewable Energy and other smaller sectors.  They include:

  • Over 5,000 companies across the UK

  • Employ nearly 90,000 people

  • Generate over £10bn turnover

However, to remain truly competitive the UK must not only provide innovative market leading products but ensure that it continues to develop the skills and technology needed for the longer term. The UK will need to promote marine engineering as a long term career opportunity.

‘Developing senior talent will require thoughtful longer-term investment’

When companies win new work, they need enough quality staff available to deliver it. So growth will only be possible with effective and timely delivery of skills.

Throughout 2014, the MoD awarded various equipment contracts and project investments to numerous suppliers across the land, air and sea sectors. The vast majority of these contracts last 5 years or more, and all form part of MoD commitments under the Future Force 2020 programme.

An abundance of skilled marine engineers is therefore crucial but currently there is just 6% of almost 2.5 million university students in the UK studying engineering and technology.

A career in marine engineering offers excellent prospects because the government as well as big companies in the oil and gas industry are constantly seeking the recruitment of marine engineers.