I was surprised to read the comments made by Liam Fox about UK manufacturing.
He states that “Britain has grown lazy and fat with business executives playing golf on a Friday afternoon rather than exporting products”.
If this is what Mr Fox believes, he should not be Trade Secretary.
I have worked in the manufacturing industry in the Sheffield Region for 40 years and his comments may have been true to some extent then, but definitely not today.
The Sheffield Region has lost some manufacturing but that was generally commodity products not today’s hi-tech, innovative products produced here by world-leading companies, which are growing and are led by business executives who work all hours supported by teams of excellent employees.
Some examples of world-class companies in the Sheffield companies are one which had 20 people 30 years ago with the UK its market and now has 1,700 employees and exports 90 per cent of its product to 110 countries.
One has developed the technology to be able to produce castings weighing 600 tonnes.
One now employs 700 people manufacturing components for the European automobile industry.
Several supply companies in the global oil and gas industries.
The Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre which Rolls Royce, Boeing and other world-class companies use to their benefit. And many more.
If there is anything preventing the manufacturing sector growing more quickly it is that governments of all shades have failed to reinstate 100 per centcapital allowances.
This has slowed investment and hindered growth.
So, Mr Fox, I invite you to visit the Sheffield Region and witness some of its world-leading manufacturing companies.
Your ill-informed comments are inappropriate, incorrect and insulting.
I should be delighted to organise that visit.