Good morning and welcome to this week’s Friday Brief.
As the date on which the UK is scheduled to leave the EU, 29th March, gets ever closer the prospect of leaving without a Deal in place and no transition period is becoming more likely. This week in the Friday Brief we have news of the opposition to that on the part of EURIS and some practical information to help you prepare your company if it does happen.
Turning to the practicalities first; the MTA has been working with the Institute of Export (IoE) to help businesses to up-skill in readiness for the UK’s 29th March exit from the European Union. The IoE is running courses round the country, in association with HMRC, to offer help. MTA members will be able to access these courses at a discounted rate and obtain help to apply for HMRC grants to pay for part of the training. All details can be found within the story below.
We also have the latest Government briefing document on trade in a No Deal environment and a link to the most up to date general information about preparing.
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy are running a consultation on how Rules of Origin will apply to the UK manufacturing sector after Brexit. They would like MTA members to answer some questions to help them in this task, the story below contains a download of the survey to take part.
Of course, until the 29th March we are still members of the EU – and even after that we will continue to be members of CECIMO – so it is still relevant for members to feed into the EU’s policy making process. CECIMO met several officials from the DG Trade of the European Commission to discuss the upcoming Free Trade Agreement negotiations with the US. Based on the discussed, the negotiations will focus on non-tariff barriers, rather than tariffs. US is one of the main export markets for CECIMO members, therefore, to better defend the interests of our industry, we need to take an active role in these negotiations, the full details of which can be found within the Brief.
MTA member have been invited to take part in The Surface Engineering Leadership Forum (SELF) at the MTC, Coventry on 21st January 2019. The event is working to support UK Materials and Manufacturing industries on the transformation journey to become world beating in the application of Industry 4.0 principles and tools. Find out how you can attend below.
Staying at the MTC on 13th March they are hosting an event to learn how your business can benefit from adopting a more digital, smarter approach to its manufacturing and supply chain. Meet the experts and see the Factory in a Box; an industrial-scale demonstrator showcasing how industrial digital technologies can change the way you do business.
A 3D-permeability measurement bench that provides accurate data and fast processing of samples has been added to a stable of high-performing equipment at the AMRC Composite Centre thanks to the support of funding from the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI).
While the monthly UK GDP data published this morning showed growth across the economy picking up gradually from the weak point in September, the manufacturing output data was almost universally negative, especially for our key customer industries. The former is driven mainly by small improvements in the service sector, assisted by some good numbers for construction, but the ONS is reporting quite a sharp fall in the Automotive industry over the past couple of months; this was not entirely unexpected given some temporary factory shut-downs that took place in October and November and the SMMT data on the output of vehicles which is showing a negative trend – engine output is just about holding at the record levels that were reached in 2017 thanks to improving exports. The economic news article this week looks at the manufacturing numbers in more detail and also includes a review of the latest productivity data – there is better news here with manufacturing productivity improving more rapidly than for the whole economy, but the gloomy output numbers suggest that this may not have continued into the final period of 2018. Finally this week, we have the latest data file for the Contract Price Adjustment service that we get from our colleagues at BEAMA - this is ideal for situations where there is a long gap between order and delivery of machinery and you may want a way of adjusting the final contract price (although it does not cover exchange rate variations).
That’s all for this week, we’ll be back next Friday with more industry news and views, until then have a great weekend from everyone at the MTA.