With the referendum on the UK staying in or leaving the European Union expected to take place in the summer of this year, the conversation on which option is best for Britain is really heating up.
If you’ve been following this story on the news or in the papers then you’ll know that immigration hogs the headlines, but the importance of the referendum’s outcome is greater than this one topic. The potential impact on UK manufacturing is significant. It poses a real threat to the performance of manufacturers like ourselves, our customers and the UK economy.
Every week a new report is released putting forward arguments either for or against continuing our membership. This week, it’s the turn of European engineering association CEEMET, which has stated that exiting the EU would result in reduced trade and weaker industrial productivity – slowing Britain’s economic growth by 0.5 percent per year for the next 15 years.
So what’s the best option for the UK? Well, that’s the million dollar question. The reality is that EU membership is so complex and the advantages and disadvantages of membership so wide ranging that its almost impossible to predict what impact Britain’s exit from the EU would truly have.
However, with manufacturing one of the main contributors to the UK economy and directly employing 2.6 million people, we hope voters will look beyond such one-dimensional issues as immigration and consider the impact that the outcome of the referendum could have on manufacturers. Because any detrimental effect on manufacturing will directly affect the economy and employment.