Subdued manufacturing growth as overcoming uncertainty becomes priority


Commenting on the Markit/CIPS Manufacturing PMI data released yesterday, Justin Benson, UK Head of Automotive at KPMG UK says:

“The latest manufacturing PMI figure (54.4) is relatively low when compared to recent months, but it is still well above 50, demonstrating continued expansion of the sector. High demand is continuing for existing products but manufactures are increasingly saying the big question is what the future holds for their cost base.

“Most of the UK’s manufacturing industry is overseas owned, making it dependent on foreign direct investment. With only months to go before Brexit, some manufacturers are delaying investment because of continued doubt around an EU trade deal. This makes the future health of the manufacturing sector uncertain.

“However, the UK will continue to be a great place to invest. Businesses need to create opportunities for investment by preparing carefully for Brexit, thus reducing uncertainty.”

Justin Benson is the Head of Automotive for KPMG in the UK as well as leading the firm’s Brexit response in the Industrial Manufacturing sector. Specifically, he is client lead for auto OEMs and works closely with the automotive industry and supply chain to determine responses to the disruption from new drive train technology and autonomous vehicles.

Justin is an engineer by background, originally designing and manufacturing tools and equipment for the engineering sector; and, prior to working with KPMG, running a US investment company’s engineering services business in the UK. Since joining KPMG Justin’s focus has always been working with organisations in automotive and engineering/manufacturing sectors.