Manufacturing stagnation set to continue, says survey

Equipment - Manufacturing sector is facing an extended period of stagnation

Britain's manufacturing sector is facing an extended period of stagnation, according to an industry survey. The quarterly survey from the British Chambers of Commerce found that the balance of manufacturing companies who are exporting products has fallen to a six-year low, in the latest sign that business is struggling against weak overseas demand and a strong currency. While overall the BCC expects the economy to continue to expand, director-general John Longworth said the outlook for manufacturing was of real concern. 'Only action to help fix the fundamentals – skills, infrastructure and access to capital – can help end the UK's two-tier growth pattern and ensure all businesses can grow,' he said. Official data out yesterday confirmed that manufacturing output has contracted for two consecutive quarters. Simon Wells, chief UK economist for HSBC, said growth was being driven by consumers, raising questions about 'the durability of growth'.


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