The former Transport Secretary, who is reviewing the economic future of the North East, says that the region needs much higher skill levels in order to excel.
Lord Adonis was attending a conference at the Baltic in Gateshead.
The former minister believes that by providing more apprenticeships and higher standards in schools, this would address the skills shortage in the North East.
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Chilly start, some frost, any mistiness clearing and brighter breaks developing
Emma Jesson brings you Sunday night's forecast
Not too much rain in the forecast outlook, apart from on Wednesday