‘While the roll-out of the covid-19 vaccine raises hope for the future, government will still need to support manufacturers to get through the winter.’
The CBI’s latest monthly Industrial Trends Survey indicates that manufacturing order books improved to their strongest in ten months during December. By comparison, the improvement in export order books was much less marked, running ‘far below their long-run average.’
The survey of 261 manufacturers found that output volumes fell at same pace in the three months to December as in the three months to November. Output declined in seven subsectors, with the headline fall led by the motor vehicles and transport equipment sub-sector.
The survey indicates that there is an expectation that output will continue to fall, at a modest pace, over the next three months. This, says the CBI, marks a slight improvement in expectations since last month’s survey.
Tom Crotty Group Director Ineos and Chair of the CBI Manufacturing Council said ‘2020 has been an incredibly difficult year for manufacturers, as firms have had to deal with the impact of a global pandemic and continued Brexit uncertainty. While the roll-out of the covid-19 vaccine raises hope for the future, government will still need to support manufacturers to get through the winter. One of the key ways the government can help manufacturers is to strike a Brexit deal, as manufacturing is one of the sectors that would be hardest hit by a no deal Brexit.’