Welcome to the MTA Friday Brief for the 2nd week of 2021 - it seems a lot longer! Apologies for the slight delay today which is because of a combination of some technical issues and the release of important data this morning.
There is little new on the Coronavirus front this week with the lockdown continuing, although we would draw your attention to the letter to the manufacturing sector from the new Secretary of State at BEIS, Kwasi Kwarteng MP, in which he emphasises that the sector should continue to work during the lockdown and that, where travel is needed (including staying overnight if necessary), either to get to/from work or for things like service and support activity at customers, then this is also allowed.
While on the subject of contact with Government, MTA has written to the Chancellor this week to set out what we see as the main priorities for the Budget statement that he is scheduled to make on 3rd March - you can see details of this I the article below.
Our Brexit news this week is a further set of links with updates on various topics, including a set of answers for FAQs from the Department of International Trade. As part of this, if any members are having specific issues relating to the new UK Global Tariff, please let us know as DIT is keen to get feedback on this aspect of Brexit.
The GDP data published this morning showed a fall in November, for the first time in six months, driven inevitably by the new lockdown in England from the start of the month. However, the manufacturing sector saw output increase in November, although the pattern between industries was somewhat patchy with aerospace seeing a fall in output. In contrast, the automotive industry saw output grow to a level higher than before the crisis began in February, although this is slightly misleading as the industry was already seeing output fall by this point, so it was not the peak that was seen in other industries.
The other economic news is from Europe where industrial production grew again in November and the European Commission’s analysis shows that industry confidence also improved in the latest data.
The MTA Business Survey for December will be closing next week but there is still time to let us have your input via the web-site at www.mta.org.uk/mta-business-survey-dec20.
Our other news this week includes details of the Made Smarter Conference in March and a conference on the additive manufacturing sector from the DRAMA project which is headed by our colleagues at the MTC. We also reflect on a new report from Make UK which looks at the prospects for investment and exports in the light of Brexit.
That’s all for this week - we will be back next Friday with more news from and for the manufacturing technology industry. Until then, stay safe and have a good weekend.