Amicus warns of likely death of UK manufacturing

Manufacturing
will cease to exist in the UK in the next 25 years if jobs continue to be lost
at the current rate, according to trade union Amicus.

It
said 155,000 UK manufacturing jobs were lost last year alone, averaging almost
13,000 every month. If jobs continue to be lost at this rate all four million
manufacturing jobs will be gone, along with the 5 million jobs that depend on
the manufacturing sector, by 2028.

In
his speech to the annual Amicus AEEU conference, Derek Simpson, joint general
secretary of Amicus, said: “We are literally staring into the abyss. If we
compare manufacturing bases with other leading countries, within five
Parliamentary terms we face having a Prime Minister not fit to share a table
with his or her G8 counterparts.

"No
other country is sacrificing their industrial base in this way because our
competitors realise how vital manufacturing is, not only to the people who work
in the sector and in related jobs, but for the whole UK economy.

“Further
job cuts undermine the UK’s capability to sustain our existing manufacturing
base, yet if the Government introduced the same employment protection here as
is enjoyed on the continent, UK workers wouldn’t be the easy target for
redundancy they are presently.”

The
erosion of manufacturing has been blamed on market forces, globalisation and
technological advances but manufacturing jobs have been lost at a far greater
rate in the UK than other European countries.

By
Quentin Reade

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