Despite significant policy uncertainty generally, and negative policies towards onshore wind and solar, the UK renewable sector has still generated a large number of jobs. Far more than industries like steel or fossil fuels, which get huge government support. It's been a challenging 10 years for me in clean energy in the UK. We've always done well here in our home market, but in the last 18 months over 80% of our assignments have been overseas. Of course that is good, and we've grown our German team, and we have full EMEA capability. That said, if the government truly get the need for a transition to a smart grid, with energy storage as a key facilitator, and as seen today, they have a real commitment to EV's, then despite Brexit, we may just see more jobs and faster growth here. We can definitely see the increased activity and interest from our clients.
Employment and turnover growth have both slowed due to numerous negative policy changes made since the 2015 general election. Employment growth has been on the decline for several years. Among the many negative political moves made are cuts to the Feed-in Tariff, closing the Renewable Obligation to onshore wind and solar, reforming the Renewable Heat Incentive, removing the Levy Exemption Certificates, and cutting the Embedded Benefits program. Further, these policy moves are not fully realised in the 2015/16 data, and the REA predicts that 2016/17 job figures, turnover, and company number data will all be seriously impacted. “The renewable energy sector is a large job creator for the UK presenting significant opportunities for international trade,” said Baroness Verma, a former UK Energy Minister. “Technology costs are falling and there are now also great advances in energy storage and electric vehicles.