MPs question the government’s Productivity Plan.

‘The Government’s much-lauded “Productivity Plan” has been criticised by a committee of cross-party MPs today – with concerns raised over the three million apprenticeship target and new levy.

The Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) committee in a report published this morning has claimed the government’s plan – heralded as a “blueprint for creating a more prosperous nation” – lacked clear, measurable objectives.

MPs took aim at the government’s “ambitious” target of three million apprenticeships by 2020, saying there was a lack of consultation with industry on the policy.’ (FE Week)

‘Productivity, often measured as the amount produced for every hour worked, has grown only slowly since the financial crisis, placing Britain even further behind its peers.

The gap prompted the business secretary, Sajid Javid, to declare last year that “boosting productivity is the economic challenge of our age”. The government launched a productivity plan in July 2015.’ (The Guardian)

‘While the MPs argue the Government was right to be concerned by the persistent weakness of UK productivity, they will say political leadership has to be stronger if policymakers are to implement policies that will boost growth and pay.

“[The Government’s Productivity Plan] represents more of an assortment of largely existing policies collected together in one place than a new plan for ambitious productivity growth,” the BIS committee says.

Iain Wright, Labour MP and chairman of the BIS Committee, is calling for clearer, more measurable objectives in response. “We are concerned that the document has been described by many businesses as being too vague and long a document to be practical, and that its lack of specific and measurable policies means that there is a risk that the document is destined to collect dust on bookshelves across Whitehall,” the report continues.’ (The Telegraph)

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