Manufacturing NI launches 'Manifesto roadshow'
Manufacturing Northern Ireland is taking its draft ‘Manufacturing Manifesto’ on the road this summer. The manifesto is an invitation to politicians and policymakers to create the conditions which will see manufacturing thrive and as a result transform every constituency in Northern Ireland through creating jobs, a strong local supply chain and internationally competitive businesses.
The organisation, which is the main umbrella body for the manufacturing sector in Northern Ireland, is holding a series of meetings starting in 6 key constituencies over August and September. The first is in Mid-Ulster at SDC Trailers in Toomebridge on Tuesday 12th of August.
The document, which looks at issues such as energy costs, industrial rates, skills and the many challenges facing exporters will help MNI foster a partnership approach with the Executive going forward. The aim is to help create the conditions which will allow our manufacturing companies to build on recent successes, survive, develop and thrive in increasingly competitive markets at home and abroad.
MNI Chief executive said that the response from MLAs was very positive, with members also keen to attend and highlight the significant challenges facing the manufacturing sector across Northern Ireland.
“Our history as an organisation is based on building support for our manufacturing sector. We have a deep understanding of the issues faced in doing business, growing exports and developing new markets. Our members have shown remarkable strength over the past decade, to weather the storm of international downturn, creating significant challenges at home and abroad. Our manufacturing sector is resourceful and innovative, and much has been achieved, particularly in recent years. But times are still hard, and as an organisation, MNI wants to deepen the relationship between our manufacturers and our decision makers. That’s why we have been developing our ‘Manufacturing manifesto’ and why we are keen to hear the views of our members and our MLAs before we commit to the final version of the document. From there we intend to publish the document in the autumn, and then work closely with the Executive to do all we can to bolster the manufacturing base.”
“Our ambition is to create the most competitive region in Europe in which to start, sustain and grow a manufacturing business, thus creating wealth and work – growing manufacturing from being 12.5% of our GDP to the European target of 20%. This will transform our economy and every constituency in Northern Ireland. Our engagement with the Northern Ireland Executive has been generally positive. However, there is plenty to do, specifically in providing affordable energy, skills, employment policy and critically, securing the cap on Industrial Rates beyond 2015.
The events will take place at the following member companies on the dates outlined below. All members of MNI are welcome:
12 August, SDC Trailers, Toome – 12.30
13 August, Irwins Bakery, Portadown – 12.30
21 August, Fleming Agri, Newbuildings – 13.00
22 August, Hill Engineering, Newry - 12.30
25 August, Bombardier Aerospace, Belfast – 12.30
5 September, Fisher Engineering, Ballinamallard – 12.30