For the UK manufacturing sector, the future is wide open, if it gets sufficient support to make the investments it needs to thrive and prosper.
The Government’s original 2017 Green Paper on industrial strategy stressed the need for investment in science, research and innovation.
In response, manufacturing executives have reiterated that the following are essential for the future:
- Financial support for increased investment in emerging technologies
- Boosting the education of the workforce
Now Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking has restated its commitment to support the manufacturing sector over the next three years, pledging to lend over £3 billion to manufacturers.
“As a major supporter of the manufacturing sector, we recognise its importance to the success and growth of the UK economy,” states David Atkinson, the UK Head of Manufacturing at Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking.
The manufacturers’ association, EEF, together with accountants BDO, have put manufacturing on course to outpace the rest of the economy in 2018.
Factory output is on course to grow by 2%, overtaking the 1.5% GDP growth forecast for the wider UK economy.
EEF says demands for British exports continues to grow and there is a continuing air of positivity currently surrounding manufacturing.
“The manufacturing sector makes up around 10% of the UK economy, but has an influence beyond this,” David states, “with many industries and businesses dependent on it for their own growth.”
Needs and Ambitions
Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking work with over 13,000 manufacturing clients.
“Each manufacturer has a unique set of needs and ambitions,” David points out. “While some may want to focus on hiring and improving how they manage their working capital, others want to invest in the means to drive productivity and growth.”
“Our commitment reaffirms our support for the many thousands of manufacturing firms that are driving innovation, job creation and UK exports”
Part of this commitment is to help develop the next generation of manufacturing engineers, supporting apprentices and graduates.
“This dovetails with the need for manufacturers to invest in emerging technologies as part of the ongoing digitalisation of manufacturing.
“For the UK’s manufacturing executives, it is vital to close the gap between the supply and demand of talent, so that businesses are properly equipped for digitalisation and the transformations it will bring.”
Post-Brexit, the UK manufacturing sector will need to unlock its full potential in embracing technology and being able to compete globally.
“The positive signs are there,” David concludes, “but it will require continued support and investment to build something robust, yet adaptable, that will be of lasting benefit to the economy.”
To explore your options for funding, growth, or investment please contact David Atkinson:
For an additional read, please visit David Atkinson Highlights the Impact of UK Manufacturing