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Liberal Democrats call for return of manufacturing jobs

March 10, 2014 8:30 PM
Originally published by East Midlands Liberal Democrats

As Liberal Democrats arrived for their Spring Conference in York, Bill Newton Dunn MEP and the East Midlands Euro candidates have welcomed Business Secretary Vince Cable's backing for efforts to "rebuild British manufacturing prowess" this week by providing millions in funding to help firms bring back production from overseas. Mr Cable was speaking at the Manufacturers' Association annual conference in London.

George Smid, Bill Newton Dunn MEP and Phil Knowles at Liberal Democrat Conference in York

George Smid, Bill Newton Dunn MEP and Phil Knowles at Liberal Democrat Conference in York

Bill Newton Dunn MEP commented: "As the advantages of low-cost countries such as China and India decrease, it's vital to encourage our companies to bring back more production to the UK, providing jobs for our people."

'Reshore UK' - established by the Coalition Government and the Manufacturing Advisory Service (MAS) helps firms bring production home - including over 1,500 manufacturing jobs in the last two years. MAS is based at PERA (Production Engineering Research Association) Consulting at Melton Mowbray. They have an 80-strong team of manufacturing advisors working with management teams to plan long-term strategies, improve processes, bring new products to market and develop their supply chains.

Liberal Democrat Euro candidate Phil Knowles, also the Liberal Democrats' Policy Officer for the East Midlands, said "We often hear about the strengths and resilience of Germany's Mittelstand companies - their core manufacturing companies which largely avoided the recession - but our own SMEs (small and medium sized enterprises), which MAS supports so well, represent over 95% of the nation's manufacturing base, and they are our Mittelstand, bigger than Germany's, and creating jobs and prosperity here."

Last Thursday, 6th March, MAS held a fully booked skills workshop at the University of Northampton on 'lean principles' - standardisation procedures to eliminate waste of manufacturing resources, time, manpower and space giving continuous improvement without large capital investments.

Recently MAS celebrated their assistance to Linwave Technology of Lincoln in winning a new $400k contract using sports technology measuring ball speeds. Linwave produces hi-tec microwave technology applications for satellite, defence, medical, telecoms, automotive and aerospace companies.