Re: "it's unlikely we'll see much return from all this"
"If a few young Brits get inspired in to engineering and later form businesses with £M turnovers it will have been worth it."
ITYM "If a few young Brits get inspired in to engineering and later find out there are precious few jobs in the UK because private companies decided it was better to save a few pennies and offshore everything while successive governments didn't give a stuff about it except for how much they could get by selling off engineering related assets to whoever had the fattest wallet."
Need an up to date example? Why is a new nuclear power plant going to be built by the Chinese? Has Osborne ever thought there might be the know how here to do at least some of it or is sucking up to some human rights abusers in order to be thrown some business scraps more important? Make up your own minds.