Letter: The dangerous illusion that we must export more

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The Independent Online
FOR YOUR call for a greater skill level in the workforce to be effective employers must be compelled to undertake training and re-training. Employers prefer to poach skilled workers from competitors rather than pay for training. This produces the remarkable paradoxes that, even with three million unemployed, skilled workers are in short supply and, given the poor skills levels in the workforce, those who do have vocational skills are often vastly overqualified for their tasks.

Our competitors, such as the French, are obliged to offer training and, in consequence, expect their workers to be appropriately qualified. Leaving matters 'to the market' is not a solution.

John Taylor

Thanet College, Kent