BCC: No surprise at manufacturing decline

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The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) isn’t shocked by figures showing a decline in manufacturing output towards the end of last year.

The UK Index of Production figures for November 2015, published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), showed output was down by 0.4 per cent on the month and 1.2 per cent on the year.

Although the total industrial production was down 0.7 per cent on the month, it was up 0.9 per cent on the year.

“The decline recorded in the manufacturing sector in November was disappointing, but not surprising,” said David Kern, the BCC’s Chief Economist.

“This reinforces the findings of our own Quarterly Economic Survey published last week, which showed that the sector was battling both acute headwinds from global export markets and major structural issues at home.

“While the UK economy will continue to rely on its vibrant services sector to drive growth, manufacturing remains a critically important part of our economy.

“Although we cannot change the challenging global environment there is still work to do to support our manufacturing sector in areas such as access to finance to make it more competitive globally.”

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