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Newsletter Listing intro for week 49

This week not only saw the MTA’s new President, Mark Ridgway, take office but the Association host its Parliamentary Reception with guest speaker the Rt Hon Michael Fallon Minister of State for Business & Enterprise. The focus of these and other stories this week is very much on opportunities for UK manufacturing exporters.

Mr Ridgway, addressing the Parliamentary Reception, spoke of developments in internationalisation and emphasised that the MTA has a strong track record of promoting overseas trade amongst its members. Commenting on the Government’s Autumn Statement, delivered earlier in the afternoon, Mr Ridgway welcomed the ten-fold increase in Capital Allowances. He stressed that manufacturing needs policies from Government that recognise the high levels of capital investment required in our sector, and also the fact that for the most part these far exceed those required in other sectors of the UK economy.

The Rt Hon Michael Fallon the Minister for Business & Enterprise thanked members for sharing the MTA paper on Advanced Manufacturing with the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation & Skills earlier this year. The Minister emphasised the importance of the MTA continuing to talk to the Government about what needs to be done to encourage growth. The Minister pointed out that the MTA membership spans a wide range of vital advanced manufacturing supply chains, and so its views are important for informing the debate on current and future policy. He assured members that the Government has never been clearer in its commitment to manufacturing which it sees as an essential building block of a more resilient, innovative economy.

The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Trade & Investment met this week to discuss ‘Export Finance – support for exporters and a strategy for growth’. The APPG was briefed by the Government’s UK Export Finance agency on services on offer to exporters and of the new UK regional export advisers.

There is news of the half day seminar on Wednesday 30th January 2013 that the MTA is co-hosting with the Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre at its Sheffield base – so save the date. We also include the MTA’s November Report on market prospects in China.

Have a good weekend.

Overview of the Chinese market - November 2012

Overview of the Chinese market - November 2012

The general consensus is that manufacturing in China is coming out of the recent decline. The automotive market, for example, is still growing with many producers including Jaguar Land Rover announcing plans recently for more investment in China.

The MTA’s China report reviews all the main manufacturing categories. It highlights that although the Chinese construction equipment market has been hit by the economic slowdown improvements are expected by next year. Other categories considered include:  aerospace; power generation, transport and government work.

Parliamentary Group considers export finance

Parliamentary Group considers export finance

The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Trade & Investment was surprised to discover through a show of hands at this week’s meeting how few SMEs present had heard of the Government’s UK Export Finance agency.

The APPG for Trade & Investment was meeting this week to discuss ‘Export Finance – support for exporters and a strategy for growth’.

ECONOMIC DATA THIS WEEK

ECONOMIC DATA THIS WEEK

PMI, UK and Euro-zone, November 2012:
 The Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) for manufacturing in the UK in November was 49.1;  although this is still below the 50 level which marks the boundary between growth and contraction, it is a significant improvement from the 47.3 which was recorded in October.  This came about because of an increase in output while new order levels were steady, although this improvement was concentrated in the consumer goods sector, with capital and intermediate goods showing a modest decline.

UK Manufacturing Output, October 2012

UK Manufacturing Output, October 2012

Data released this morning by the Office for National Statistics showed that manufacturing output fell by -1.3% compared to September 2012 and by -2.1% compared to October 2011. The headline figures for the whole of the production industries, which includes the extraction industries, is even worse with oil & gas and coal output down sharply on both measures due to maintenance and production problems respectively.

The Autumn Statement

The Autumn Statement

The Autumn Statement has evolved into a kind of mini budget. Tax rates are trimmed, spending priorities are reassessed and the Chancellor enjoys another day in the sun. At least that is the theory. In practice this year’s Autumn Statement looked like it was going to be a very difficult one for George Osborne to deliver. The macro-economic situation remains extremely challenging and it was expected that he would have to announce that all the indicators were pointing in the wrong direction while still having to impose austerity across Government.

Business Minister speaks to MTA Reception

Business Minister speaks to MTA Reception

At the MTA’s Parliamentary Reception at the House of Commons this week Mark Ridgway the new MTA President and later the Rt Hon Michael Fallon the Minister for Business & Enterprise both emphasised the importance of manufacturing as a key component of a balanced UK economy. During the two hour Reception over 20 MPs and peers dropped in to meet MTA members and learn more about the manufacturing technologies sector.