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Confident manufacturers planning to recruit

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Manufacturing output and orders in the region have grown solidly over the past year helped by strong exports and a turnaround in the mechanical equipment sector plus healthy demand in the food & drink, pharmaceuticals and metals sectors. An report EEF/BDO report shows shows that output at manufacturers in the East of England was above the UK average and productivity was the second best of any region. Although confidence across the region’s 13,780 manufacturing firms ranks fifth in the UK, the recruitment outlook for the coming quarter is the second highest for all regions.

Martin Strutt, EEF director for membership engagement in the South East, said: “Positive trends in UK manufacturing are being reflected here in the East of England with confidence within the sector across the region remaining good. Order books are healthy, with this positive trend set to continue over coming months. Uncertainty around the UK’s future relationship with the EU could still hamper investment and recruitment, but overall the outlook is extremely positive.” Manufacturers employ 217,000, some 7 per cent of the region’s workforce.

Keith Ferguson, partner and head of manufacturing at BDO in the East of England, says: “East of England manufacturers have had a strong year with positive demand from both home and abroad, driving strong confidence and recruitment balances.

“However to ensure continued growth, we need the Government to deliver a long-term, practical Industrial Strategy for the UK and the Regions - with a focus on the mid-market and investing in education, skills and in the East of England infrastructure. From better roads, rail links to reliable broadband connections and support for Industry 4.0, the Government needs to help create the right environment for East of England manufacturers’ to continue to be successful in what will undoubtedly be challenging times in the short and medium term.”

Last Updated ( Thursday, 27 July 2017 08:09 )