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£4.5 million for the Creative Industries

25/01/2011

Today Skillset Cymru announced an investment of £4.5 million to train people in the creative industries in West Wales and the Valleys under the Skills in the Digital Economy programme.

S4C is a key partner in this investment and this reflects the Channel’s commitment to ensure that the production sector throughout Wales has the necessary skills to create programmes of the highest standard and lead the field in the creative industries.

This is the announcement by Skillset Cymru, the Wales branch of Skillset, the Skills Sector Council of the Creative Industries:

£4.5 million for Creative Industries in West Wales and the Valleys

The Deputy Minister for Science, Innovation and Skills, Lesley Griffiths AM, has announced a £4.5m EU-backed programme to ensure workers in the Creative Industries across West Wales and the Valleys have the skills to build a dynamic, enterprising sector.

Skillset Cymru, the Welsh arm of Skillset, the Sector Skills Council for the Creative Media industries, will lead the Skills in the Digital Economy programme to address the skills needs of the Creative Media Industry over the next four years.

The training programme is backed with £2.7m from the European Social Fund through the Welsh Assembly Government, with the rest of the funds provided by Welsh broadcaster S4C, the trade association for independent producers in film and television in Wales, Teledwyr Annibynnol Cymru (TAC) and Skillset Cymru.

Skills in the Digital Economy will help workers and businesses upskill to keep apace with new technologies and support management, technical and craft skills to meet the needs of employers and freelancers.

Lesley Griffiths said investing in skills was vital for the on-going success and growth of this dynamic sector.

"A workforce with the relevant high level skills is essential to drive forward the performance and productivity of this diverse sector and ensure that Wales can derive the maximum economic and cultural benefits.

"The Welsh Assembly Government’s Delivering a Digital Wales strategy highlights the importance of capitalising on the opportunities of the digital age and outlines our commitment to help train people in more specialist skills and technologies for industry. I welcome this latest initiative that supports these objectives."

Skills in the Digital Economy will carry out research to identify current and future skills needs for the sector in the target region, in order to develop and deliver relevant training and help individuals develop new skills to sustain their existing employment or to seek new employment.

Director of Skillset Cymru, Gwawr Hughes, said: “This programme is going to be an extremely important driver for the ongoing development and success of the Creative Media Industries in Wales. There will be support on all aspects of the sector including management, technical and craft skills. Our aim is to improve learning provision and help workers and enterprises to upskill and adapt to new forms of work organisation and new technologies.”

S4C Chief Executive Arwel Ellis Owen said: “S4C funds training provision for the creative media industries in Wales and welcomes the launch of The Skills for the Digital Economy programme. We look forward to working in partnership with the programme team to ensure that the Welsh production sector has the skills to maximise its economic potential.”

Iestyn Garlick, Chair of TAC and Director of Antenna commented: “As a key partner in the Skillset led programme, Teledwyr Annibynnol, Cymru (TAC) is highly supportive of this new investment into skills for the Creative Media workforce in Wales. We have strong membership specifically in this geographical area and we look forward to them benefiting directly from this much needed support.”

Other key aims of the programme are to improve understanding of diversity issues facing the Creative Media workforce in the Convergence area and specific environmental issues.

Ends

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