© Phoenix Group.
Improving competitiveness is a key priority for British manufacturers, with nearly nine in ten manufacturers looking to invest in improvements to their efficiency and productivity, according to Lombard.
87% of manufacturers in the survey said they were investing to improve efficiency, while four in five manufacturers are planning to invest in supporting exports in 2016. For a third of manufacturers, export will be the main area of investment this year.
There was an acknowledgement of the need for government support, Lombard said, with 70% of manufacturers saying that they would like to see more done to encourage export activity, particularly when it comes to stripping back bureaucratic processes.
Ian Isaac, head of Lombard said, “It’s very encouraging that UK manufacturers are taking an enterprising approach to the importance of investing to secure their place in the competitive global arena.
“The findings of the survey indicate that UK manufacturers are very aware of what they need to do in order to secure ongoing and sustainable growth. Within their business plans, investment aimed at securing innovation, improving productivity and establishing strong export markets will continue to be fundamental to securing the future health of the UK economy.”
Lee Hopley, chief economist for EEF, the Manufacturers’ Organisation, said: “It’s the worst kept secret that the UK has a big productivity challenge. We’ve lost a lot of ground since the financial crisis, but the UK has some real potential strength in its industrial sector, which historically has a good track record in delivering productivity gains. The need for a laser-like focus on driving through efficiency improvements, innovating and investing in new technologies is central to the business model of manufacturers, a fact confirmed in this new research. While we see lots of concrete steps being taken by manufacturers to grow and be competitive in a challenging economic climate, it’s never job done.
“To get manufacturing growth and productivity on a stronger trajectory we want to see more companies investing in major technological advances, a strong commitment to industrial strategy from government and finance providers working in partnership with industry to make investment plans a reality.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2021
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