UK Businesses Call On Govt Support For SMEs

Some 70 Per Cent Of UK Firms Want Government Action To Support Manufacturing Sector

10.01.2014

Steven Beahan, Partner | +44 (0)114 294 7868

UK businesses are calling on the government to show support for British manufacturing in order to maintain the economic recovery.

A survey carried out by Duo UK of over 1,000 purchasing professionals discovered 70 per cent of firms feel the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition needs to harness the momentum created by the sector in the last six months of 2013.

On top of this, 75 per cent of those questioned admitted they are keen to see the introduction of legislation or other initiatives designed to boost home grown small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs).

Duo UK managing director David Brimelow said it makes "common sense" for British businesses to buy off each other when it is commercially viable, as this will help the country as a whole.

"By supporting home-grown companies, businesses help to create stronger local economies and skilled employment opportunities, both of which will help the UK get back on track as quickly as possible. Buying local, British-made goods is about reinvesting in the backbone of Britain and helping future generations look forward to a more stable economy," he added.

Shadow Businesses Secretary, Chuka Umunna said manufacturing is "incredibly important" to the long-term future of the UK's economy as it continues to offer better paid, high skilled jobs at a time when they are needed.

In terms of which companies are most likely to 'buy British', 40 per cent of large corporations claimed there is a moral duty to do so, while a further 36 per cent labelled the practice as common sense.

The latest figures from the Purchasing Managers' Index published by Markit and the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply show the manufacturing sector continues to grow.

In December 2013, a score of 57.3 was recorded - anything above 50 represents growth. This improvement was built on a rise in production levels, coupled with solid new orders figures.

Expert Opinion
While the improving economy has seen much talk emerge about how small businesses can take advantage of opportunities abroad, it is interesting to also see calls for more to be done to ensure that such organisations are able to tap into potential on these shores too.

"Sectors such as manufacturing are so important to the domestic economy and it remains the case that small businesses need support from a range of sources if they are to develop and become the drivers of economic growth which many expect them to be.

"We have long been advocates of the fantastic and innovative work that SMEs do and any call for their skills to be harnessed further can only be welcomed. We would however also urge small businesses to recognise that it is not easy to go through growth and develop on their own and that they must have a strong support network in place which will allow them to hopefully thrive in the coming months."
Steven Beahan, Partner