Hello from the MTA Team - we hope we find you both well and busy. There are lots of different subjects in this week’s edition of the MTA Friday Brief so we are sure you find something of interest.
We start this week with some sad news with the death of Lord O’Neill of Clackmannan; to many MTA members he was known simply as Martin and over the years he was a great supporter of engineering in general and MTA in particular.
The Coronavirus update for this week focuses on the new “rule of six” introduced this week with a specific emphasis on its implications for the work environment; we also include a note on the lifting of restrictions in the North of England (except Bolton), the new Kickstart scheme and a reminder of travel exemptions for certain types of employees, including engineers travelling for installation or service activity.
The MTA Business Survey for August will close early next week but there is still time to let us have your input. The on-line form at www.mta.org.uk/mta-business-survey-aug20 remains open and we hope that as many MTA members as possible will take a couple of minutes to participate to help build a good picture of the manufacturing technology.
There is something of a Russian theme this week with two items of interest. We will be organising a UK pavilion at Metalloobrabotka in May 2021 and there is more information about this below. Another article gives details of a webinar being organised by the DIT on how to get certification for products exported to Russia which will also include customs clearance - again, more details below.
Next on the agenda are a couple of reminders of subjects we covered recently. The Manufacturing Institute’s Festival of Manufacturing Excellence will take place on 7th/8th October; the article highlights some of the key topics and includes details of how to book with a discount for MTA members. The other reminder relates to the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme which closes at the end of this month (30th September); this could be of use to you or your customers and MTA can point you to Associate Members who can help if your current funder is not participating in this scheme.
We also have two pieces of news on apprenticeships (although combined in one article below); these cover updated guidance on providing apprenticeships during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and details of additional financial support for apprenticeships in England which are available up to 31st January 2021.
Another article gives details of a revised version of the UKLA Good Practice Guide for the Safe Handling and Disposal of Metalworking Fluids from the Health and Safety Executive in collaboration with the UK Lubricants Association. The Made Smarter organisation has launched its new look digitalisation platform at www.madesmarter.uk and there are more details of this in the article below.
The main economic news this week was the monthly GDP and industrial production data published this morning by the ONS. This showed that the recovery is continuing with GDP increasing by +6.6% compared to June, while manufacturing output was up by +6.3%. As positive as these figures are, they hide the fact that the economy overall is still -11.7% smaller than in February (taken as the pre-pandemic point), while manufacturing is -8.7% lower than its level in that month. We also take a look at the latest quarterly GDP data from Eurostat which has shown a minor upward revision in its estimates for Q2, although they still show a very large fall in economic activity.
We have a separate piece which summarises the latest webinar from our colleagues at Oxford Economics. The topic for this was the Euro-zone economy and industrial outlook and we have some notes to guide you through the slides which you can download from this article.
That’s all for this week, so we will leave you to peruse the various stories this week and, until we meet again next Friday for more updates, stay safe and have a good weekend.