The Manufacturing Assembly Network (MAN), which employs over 2,000 people across nine sub-contract manufacturers and a specialist engineering design agency, has today launched its Post Covid-19 MANifesto to detail the support the sector needs, if it is to recover from the pandemic and restore its position as a manufacturing powerhouse in the 21st century.

Signed by MDs from the 10 companies, the 10-point plan focuses on the development of a coherent cross-party industrial strategy and a commitment to reshoring that will help build the domestic capability and supply chain so the UK can produce critical components and life-saving equipment.

It also calls on more dedicated manufacturing support, introduction of immediate stimulus packages for critical industries and sustainable investment to help with the transition to the ‘green economy’ and the transport revolution (automated, connected, electrified and shared mobility).

Adam Cunningham, chairman of MAN, comments: “Whilst there is a real possibility of an economic downturn, the pandemic has underlined the importance of having a resilient domestic supply chain that can produce vital, often life-saving equipment in times of national crisis.

“This renewed shift towards ‘making things’ has gained momentum with the Chancellor and many economic experts calling for sustained investment in industry, so we can build capacity and maximise our world leading design, innovation and quality.

“We have been here before and we’ve heard politicians wheel out empty promises because it seems like the right thing to say. Well not this time. The MANifesto has been created by 10 SMEs that cover more than 15 sectors and have a real appreciation for the challenges we are facing, but equally importantly the massive opportunities that exist with the right backing.

“We want government to listen to and work with SMEs who are at the coalface to ensure UK manufacturing thrives again and is self-reliant wherever possible. In short, there can be no capacity in the modern-day supply chain without a healthy and vibrant SME base.”