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Uk's Manufacturing Base

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I've been hearing a lot of people on here saying that the UK is the 5th largest manufacturing nation in the world. That doesn't quite gel with the type of friends I have. I wanted to do a straw poll on how many here know people who have a job in manufacturing. Before anybody starts, I know this poll is unscientific on many levels and it can neither prove nor disprove the first assertion. I just thought that it would be interesting

Best,

L

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I know lots of people in manufacturing and I moved from transport IT role to an IT role in the mfg sector last year.

The shop floor/assembly is a minor part of manufacturing so I only voted 20%, i know more people who are involved with mfg in some way or another....

Edited by moosetea

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I've been hearing a lot of people on here saying that the UK is the 5th largest manufacturing nation in the world. That doesn't quite gel with the type of friends I have. I wanted to do a straw poll on how many here know people who have a job in manufacturing. Before anybody starts, I know this poll is unscientific on many levels and it can neither prove nor disprove the first assertion. I just thought that it would be interesting

Best,

L

I would imagine its largely dependant upon where you reside. Those living in the traditional manufacturing hotspots of the midlands and certain northern towns will no doubt appear at the top, the Southerners etc at the bottom of your survey. I have previously worked in public sector, manufacturing (aerosol plastic products), retail, briefly in food, etc.

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6 months ago :

a couple people I knew worked at the JCB plant, they no longer do this,

a small engineering company was also supplying steel fabrications to Europe in a nearby town they went under quite recently.

So before plenty , now zilch.

Infact thinking about it of all the audit and accounts clients of my old company only 2 companies made things one was work wear clothing which they cheated because they started to import from China and finish in the UK quite literally take it out of a bag made in China and put it in a made in UK bag.

And also a fabrics company which did manufacture things , the thing is they upgraded their machines so that the factory previously needing 3 people per machine (they had 25 machines) bought 3 modern machines from Germany, which can be looked after by 2 part timers, one to feed the raw cotton into a hopper which he does enough for a couple of days , and the output it 4 times more than the 25 machines.

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I suspect there is a self selection bias against knowing people in manufacturing on this site - after all if you are actually making stuff spending your day on the interweb is less of an option than if you are in the service sector.

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Isn't manufacturing something that the great unwashed engage in?

Law, finance & Medicine, that's what people here should aim for, let third world peasants make stuff, we are better than that…

Top 7 Mfg Countries in Billions of $s (I am surprised Italy is so high, but thinking about it cars, shoes, clothes and high end goods.

The Uk I think has been quite ruthless with manufacturing, companies look for where the most value is added and aim to keep that bit in the UK, manufacturers are looking to make as much money as possible in the UK. Anything that is simple or can be automated and made very very very cheaply is off-shored and shipped in but final assembly, highly customized goods, and anything of hight value or requires high quality is kept onshore. China make more of the raw bits for peanuts/less $s, but alot of the time we still put it together. Next time your in the bathroom pick up cans and jars of stuff and check where it is made, the UK will appear alot more than you think....

and the Graph below shows manufacturing in the UK continues to grow even though things aren't costing much more to make....

Top7Manufacturers.jpg

post-552-1232614260_thumb.jpg

Edited by moosetea

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Well you know me and I manufacture things. Big things that provide leccy around the world.

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Guest Steve Cook
https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/th...ok/geos/uk.html

GDP - composition by sector:

agriculture: 0.9%

industry: 23.4%

services: 75.7% (2007 est.)

Labor force:

30.89 million (2007 est.)

Labor force - by occupation:

agriculture: 1.4%

industry: 18.2%

services: 80.4% (2006 est.)

Unemployment rate:

5.3% (2007 est.)

And the short version is....

We're f*cked

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And also a fabrics company which did manufacture things , the thing is they upgraded their machines so that the factory previously needing 3 people per machine (they had 25 machines) bought 3 modern machines from Germany, which can be looked after by 2 part timers, one to feed the raw cotton into a hopper which he does enough for a couple of days , and the output it 4 times more than the 25 machines.

This type of prodigious increase in productivity should be a great benefit for a society. And it can be with the right economic system. But in the current system it just means mass job loss, and ultimately the company contracting.

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does software count as 'stuff' or does it have to be made of oily metal?

Of course it counts as 'stuff' - we make it and we sell it and maintain it.

My industry - videogames development - is still growing, apparently. I guess people still want to be entertained. Some developers are tightening their belts, and there are some redundancies, but (fingers crossed) it's nowhere near as bad as other industries. Many developers are actively recruiting.

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Drilling down even further, I even know people who supply the tools needed to make 'stuff', i.e. ceramic tools, lathe chucks, boring bars, etc. There are 1000s more small manufacturing firms than most posters on here are aware of. Not all those 'edge of town' industrial estates contain classic car storage and garden furniture shops, you know.

As stated previously, the fact that less than 20% say they even KNOW anyone who makes 'stuff' is more of a reflection of the employment of people on here,and the small sphere in which many seem to operate. Its a well-known fact that most people socialise with people they associate with most, often the people you have to work with, worse luck. <_<

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Of course it counts as 'stuff' - we make it and we sell it and maintain it.

My industry - videogames development - is still growing, apparently. I guess people still want to be entertained. Some developers are tightening their belts, and there are some redundancies, but (fingers crossed) it's nowhere near as bad as other industries. Many developers are actively recruiting.

That's my point - but i bet you're included in the 'services' category, along with the ethereal financial products, call centres, etc. The statistics are misleading.

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Isn’t manufacturing something that the great unwashed engage in?

Law, finance & Medicine, that’s what people here should aim for, let third world peasants make stuff, we are better than that…

I presume you are saying that tongue in cheek. If so, use a smiley, I often 'don't get it.'If not, it's this attitude, sadly of many, to manufacturing that is symptomatic of why it has been in decline, and why engineers are so looked down upon. In Germany, Scandinavia and the USA, engineers and people who make stuff are seen as having good skills and producing high value, which they do.

Edited by deflation

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one was work wear clothing which they cheated because they started to import from China and finish in the UK quite literally take it out of a bag made in China and put it in a made in UK bag.

Is it legal to describe doing that as, "Made in the UK"?

Peter.

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Is building a house |(or a block of flats) counted as a manufacturing statistic?

Not in itself I suppose, but all the materials used that are made in the UK would count, i.e. bricks (big stockplies at the moment). A lot of wood is imported though.

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Is it legal to describe doing that as, "Made in the UK"?

Peter.

There would have to be some portion of manufacture (not sure exact %) that is 'made in UK'. Perhaps the bags were made in UK and this makes it legal. (not right though).

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I wouldn't call the oil industry 'manufacturing' as such, and those of my acquaintance who aren't tradesmen, in the 'forces or emergency services are all in oil, one way or another...so I guess I don't know anybody in manufacturing. I'd have nothing to talk about with production line types, anyway.

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My industry - videogames development -

[completely off topic sorry]

Could you tell your bosses to leave off all this DRM shite, I'm fed up of spending hours downloading patchs and jumping through hoops, registering and form filling and generally being treated like a criminal just to play a damn game bought. Its getting top the point I'll just pirate stuff instead since the way developers treat you you might as well anyway.

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There would have to be some portion of manufacture (not sure exact %) that is 'made in UK'. Perhaps the bags were made in UK and this makes it legal. (not right though).

Depends how much value it adds, if the product was worth 50p before it is packaged but £3 after (for domestic and export markets) then you need to keep this step in the UK and get rid of the initial steps as it is making you the most amount of profit. Keep the stuff that makes the most money in the UK, get rid of the cheap automated steps to a cheaper country. As a % of value added the £2.50 is by far the biggest % of the product...

Edited by moosetea

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Depends how much value it adds, if the product was worth 50p before it is packaged but £3 after (for domestic and export markets) then you need to keep this step in the UK and get rid of the initial steps as it is making you the most amount of profit. Keep the stuff that makes the most money in the UK, get rid of the cheap automated steps to a cheaper country...

I have meant to post this before but if importer's/wholesaler's and retailer's margins are such an enormous proportion of the final retail price does that not mean that the collapse in sterling will have little impact on the price of imported manufactured goods on the shops shelves? May be different for food and energy though.

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  • 284 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

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