Written evidence submitted by the Cornwall Marine Network Group (MAR0023)
Please find below, the South West’s written submission to the Transport Select Committee Maritime 2050 inquiry.
The Transport Committee has commencement work on an inquiry into Maritime 2050: Objectives, implementation and effects
Ranging across shipping, ports, services, engineering and leisure marine industries, the Department for Transport leads on the Government’s strategy for the maritime sector.
The Department’s policy is framed by Maritime 2050: Navigating the future. Which was published in 2019, this Government strategy addresses seven top-level themes of competitive advantage, technology, people, environment, trade, infrastructure, security and resilience.
Within each, there are further sub-themes with short-term, medium-term and long-term targets. It has been supplemented by later documents such as the Maritime Recovery Road Map following the onset of the pandemic and the Clean Maritime Plan, an environmental route map.
The Transport Committee is calling for written evidence, particularly on:
From Maritime UK
When the Maritime 2050 strategy was published in January 2019, it was the first major strategy comprehensively outlining government and industry priorities and ambitions for the future of the UK maritime sector.
The document set out over 180 recommendations across seven themes, all intended to ensure the UK secures its position as a globally renowned, competitive maritime nation. These themes spanned widely, anticipating challenges and opportunities ahead on the environment, security and resilience, infrastructure, people, competitive advantage, innovation and technology and trade, and the strategy detailed the ways in which the maritime sector – through both. through both government and industry action – could capitalise on these opportunities in the short, medium and long-term.
Maritime 2050 Progress report
At the halfway mark for the short-term recommendations, Maritime UK and its members have determined to take stock of where the sector finds itself on the journey to realising the strategy’s ambitions. This is to ensure that progress is appropriately monitored, and to provide a basis for the consideration of current gaps in delivery or reconfigurations that may have to be made due to changed circumstances; not unlikely for a strategy spanning thirty years. In the period since the publication of Maritime 2050, major geopolitical, economic, and societal shocks have both highlighted the need for a strategic response to the major challenges of our time, such as climate change, but also complicated its delivery. Despite external changes however, the Maritime 2050 strategy has remained relevant and continues to provide a roadmap for the progress of the sector that can help respond to the additional challenges of recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. The pandemic has brought into sharp relief the essential nature of maritime supply chains and its key workers in keeping the country supplied and connected. Delivering upon the recommendations of Maritime 2050 will contribute to future resilience in the face of other unprecedented circumstances.
Maritime 2050 progress report - June 2021
Maritime 2050 is a long-term strategy for the South West maritime sector and sets out a high-level vision for its future. People are an integral part of the sector and form an important part of this strategy. This is where our Green Skills agenda fits in to the short, medium and long-term strategy.
The diversity of careers within the sector is vast. Careers range from working on a super yacht, a cruise liner or on our inland waterways, to supporting the critical role of our ports & harbours, business services sector, naval architecture or designing the maritime technology and the supply chain which support all of these sectors.
With such a wide scope, there comes a number of areas to consider such as how we entice people into these careers, how we address diversity, what qualifications and skills are needed now and in the future and how do we enable the transferability from one part of the sector to another, ensuring people have varied and fulfilling careers.
Likewise, people need to be supported in the roles they do, particularly in light of changing technology and the need for continuous professional development but also in terms of employment rights and welfare, ensuring they have the right working conditions in which to thrive.
We are slowly seeing more and more Green Skills publications each week, some are promoting events and others are actively promoting training. In an ideal world, this should be coordinated by a single regulatory body (Martine UK) to ensure that all regulatory stands are met and the outputs are of the highest stands and as a minimum the base line for the rest of the world. We need to move very soon with this agenda.
We need to ensure that any strategy that we adopt, cements the South West as a leader in innovation across all of the challenges faced by the maritime industries globally by facilitating collaboration across the sector and securing government investment for the new, national cross-sector collaboration vehicle, Maritime Research & Innovation UK.
We need to ensure that any strategy that we adopt, are key drivers in boosting prosperity and opportunity in our coastal communities by working with local and national government to create more pro-investment conditions for maritime businesses such as supporting and maintaining our ports & harbours and by creating a network of regional maritime cluster organisations to foster collaboration between industry, local government and academia to drive growth.
Maritime makes a unique contribution to coastal communities across the United Kingdom and none more than in the South West. The industry is economically and emotionally hardwired into the fabric of these communities and makes a significant contribution to many aspects of their day to day activity.
The following could be used to form the bases of a local action plan;
The aim is to work collaboratively across the sector and with government to minimise the sector’s impact upon the environment, and to ensure that we have effective Sustainability champions, who can enable effective projects and initiatives that enhance environmental sustainability and work to realise new opportunities South West.
We need to ensure that any strategy that we adopt, will attract new maritime businesses to the South West by working with government to enhance the competitiveness of the wider UK’s business environment and to grow the export of maritime products and services by supporting companies to export and promoting the sector across the wider UK’s diplomatic and commercial network.