Despite the persisting uncertainty of Brexit, growth has returned to the British manufacturing sector, and it has climbed up to the world’s 8th largest industrial nation.
The UK has climbed one place since last year, and according to the EEF, annual manufacturing output is worth more than £183 billion.
The manufacturer’s group said that the largest sector is food and drink (16%), while the chemicals and pharmaceuticals and transport sectors account for 14% of output each.
Lee Hopley, Chief Economist of EEF, said: “With the focus on industrial strategy, this year we highlight the varying strengths we see across manufacturing sub-sectors, from the strong R&D performance of pharmaceuticals and transport to the high export intensity of machinery and chemicals.”
Manufacturing is spread across the country, with the biggest regional powerhouse in the North West, and strength across the West Midlands and East Midlands across the aerospace and automotive sectors.
Manufacturing currently generates 44% of total UK exports, meaning it is vital for the nation’s future source of income, and will increasingly provide Britain’s link to the world post Brexit.
There are currently £2.6 million people working within the manufacturing sector across the UK, and average earnings have increased from £31,489 to £32,047 which is £3,748 more than the whole economy average pay.
A Business Department spokesman said: “The UK is the fifth largest economy and manufacturing is an important part of our global success as we prepare to leave the European Union.
“Our industrial strategy is supporting the sector, ensuring it can continue to grow and share its success through the creation of good jobs across the whole of the country.”