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12 June 2012
Poor manufacturing figures make it imperative that the government adopts a joined-up manufacturing strategy, Unite, the largest union in the country, said today.
Unite assistant general secretary, Tony Burke said that key export industries, such as pharmaceuticals which saw a sharp fall, need to have an environment that is conducive to growth.
Tony Burke said: “George Osborne is like a failed magician pulling spurious reasons out of the hat to blame for his own short-sighted policies – the latest excuse being the eurozone.
“No one doubts the problems in the eurozone, but Britain's manufacturing problems emanate from the Treasury, which has not been helped by hard-hitting and cruel austerity measures that have sucked jobs and demand from the domestic economy.”
Unite has developed a 10-point plan to boost manufacturing, which includes a strategic investment bank in the UK which will ensure access to funding for all and especially for small and medium-sized businesses; and that ministers should reintroduce a regional development aid system.
Tony Burke said: “There is no government strategy and industry demands intervention quickly to create growth and jobs.
Some parts of the manufacturing sector are doing well, such as the car industry, but we can't rely on just one area – a joined-up strategy has to embrace all of the UK's industrial capacity.
“Many of our members are concerned about their jobs, which is not helped by the government's lack of an industrial strategy.”
Factory output fell 0.7 per cent in April from the previous month, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).