Manufacturing Industries: Imports

Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy written question – answered am ar 23 Ionawr 2017.

Danfonwch hysbysiad imi am ddadleuon fel hyn

Photo of Lord Taylor of Warwick Lord Taylor of Warwick Non-affiliated

To ask Her Majesty’s Government in the light of the higher costs of importing materials as a consequence of the fall in the value of the pound sterling, what steps they are taking to support the manufacturing sector.

Photo of Lord Prior of Brampton Lord Prior of Brampton Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)

We are supporting manufacturers by cutting corporation tax to 17% by 2020 and slashing red tape by a further £10billion. We are investing in new scientific infrastructure on a record scale by delivering on the £6.9bn science capital commitment in our manifesto, and at Autumn Statement 2016 we announced that we will make the UK the global go-to nation for scientists, innovators and advanced manufacturing investors, by investing an extra £2bn a year in R&D by the end of this Parliament. As part of this, there will be a new Industrial Strategy Challenge Fund (ISCF) to back priority technologies – such as robotics and biotechnology – where the UK has the potential to turn strengths in research into a global industrial and commercial lead.

It is true to say that, for some manufacturers, input costs have increased due to the Pound’s depreciation. However the depreciation helps UK manufacturers that export, since their products become more competitive to foreign buyers. The latest manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index survey shows new exports for manufacturers increasing for the seventh successive month.

The most recent data from the Office for National Statistics show that the total trade deficit narrowed by £0.4bn to £11.0bn in the three months to November, and that manufacturing output increased by 0.3%.

We are not complacent and we know that promoting trade delivery is more important than ever for the UK: the creation of the Department for International Trade demonstrates clearly that the Government is committed to promoting international trade and investment in manufacturing.

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