It has been a depressing time in news. Difficult to get out of bed without fears of global terrorism, ebola, and the worst British winter ever about to hit us. Amidst all this it would be easy to overlook the smaller gloom of what looks like less comforting economic news.
Since the start of September, we have seen reflections on the end of the recovery due to slow growth in output and demand in August. In Britain, the Markit/Cips purchasing index was reporting the slowest growth for over a year, encouraging fears that any economic growth might be slowing. The Euro zone reported a similar picture of deteriorating demand. This poll shows figures of both output, orders and job creation.
One culprit for this offered was the Ukraine crisis, affecting our economy as export orders slowed to a five month low. Not good news for a government keen to encourage export trade rather than domestic, which they believe the high rises in lending the Bank of England reports, indicates we are too reliant on.
What I find the biggest mystery is that here we have a section that makes up a tenth of the economy; that has huge influences on every other sector; global figures and Bank Policies. It is perhaps the most exposed to the flightiness of foreign policies, relying as it does on its export markets. Yet it is still totally disrespected in Britain.
The governments allow us to drown in red tape, bureaucracy and Eurolaw and have fast ceased to try championing manufacturing as the next vote winner.
Our planning departments avoid it like the plague in favour of green science parks which are more politically friendly. Investors are attracted by equally fast and shiny quick bucks rather than solid production machinery, especially the newer types which most firms across this country badly need to compete.
We do not bring up our sons and daughters to say I want to manufacture when I grow up.
Manufacturing is the country’s dirty secret that everyone is happy to look down on. Yet with just a little more encouragement, a little more investment and support and one massive change of reality, the hugely influential sector could be Britain’s new best friend.
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