THE UK MANUFACTURING AND ENGINEERING INDUSTRY ON BREXIT

UK MANUFACTURING AND ENGINEERING INDUSTRY INCREASINGLY CONFIDENT THAT BREXIT WILL BE GOOD FOR BUSINESS

Subcon – 6-8 June 2017, NEC: www.subconshow.co.uk

28 March 2017

Ahead of Theresa May and Government triggering Article 50 tomorrow (29 March), a survey by The Engineer in collaboration with Subcon 2017 has revealed a marked increase in the number of manufacturing and engineering companies who believe Brexit will be good for business and industry. 

When asked if they think their company will have a stronger future once Britain exits the EU, 40 per cent of the 269 businesses polled answered yes compared to 14 per cent 11 months ago.  The level of uncertainty has doubled, however, with 14 per cent of businesses unsure what impact leaving the EU will have compared to 7 per cent in 2016. 

The survey also asked if businesses think UK manufacturing and engineering – as a whole – will have a stronger future once Britain is no longer part of the EU. 45 per cent answered yes, compared to 30 per cent last year – an increase of 50 per cent.

A new question for 2017 asked if business and industry will suffer if Brexit impacts free movement of labour and responses were split down the middle: 46 per cent believe it will have an impact; 47 per cent believe it will make no difference. 

Gordon Kirk, Event Director, Subcon, commented: “It’s encouraging to hear that industry is feeling confident and positive about the future and our poll certainly supports that in relation to Brexit. 

“It’s interesting to see the significant sway in opinion since we last polled businesses 11 months ago, especially as the UK is still at least two years away from breaking away completely from the European Union. The complex process of negotiating new trade agreements has not begun and the full impact of Brexit is yet to be felt, so it will be very interesting to see whether confidence continues to grow at the same rate over the next 12 months.”



SURVEY RESULTS IN FULL 

2016: Do you think Britain should leave or remain in the EU? 
Leave 37%
Remain 50%
I don’t know 13%


2016: Do you think your company will have a stronger future if Britain leaves the EU? 
Yes 14%
No 79%
I don’t know 7%


2017: Do you think your company will have a stronger future now that Britain is leaving the European Union?
Yes 40%
No 46%
I don’t know 14%


2017: Has your opinion changed in the last 12 months?
Yes 16%
No 83%
I don’t know 1%


2016: Do you think the UK manufacturing/engineer industry will have a stronger future if Britain leaves in the EU? 
Yes 30%
No 52%
I don’t know 8%


2017: Do you think the UK manufacturing/engineering industry will have a stronger future now that Britain is leaving the European Union?
Yes 45%
No 41%
I don’t know 14%

2017: Has your opinion changed in the last 12 months?
Yes 20%
No 80%


2017: Do you think your business/industry will suffer if Brexit impacts free movement of labour? 
Yes 46%
No 47%
I don’t know 8%