AN alarming skills shortage in the the car manufacturing industry has been revealed by a new report. 

The automotive sector is one of the North-East's key employers, supporting an estimated 40,000 jobs directly and across the supply chain. 

Research from First Class Technical Recruitment, which has offices in Newcastle and Middlesbrough, showed 78 per cent of companies in the automotive industry believe there is a shortage of skills within the sector and are experiencing difficulties sourcing qualified candidates, notably in engineering roles. 

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Matthew Bowey, automotive consultant at First Class Technical Recruitment, said: ‘The industry is proving to be the driving force behind the manufacturing sector’s recovery and is therefore a very attractive market.

"Companies should consider sourcing candidates from other industries with transferable skills.

“It provides a clear warning that the next generation of skilled workers must be developed before the skills gap widens, damaging the UK’s automotive industry permanently.”