Automotive manufacturing motors to 20% rise in turnover

Posted on 22 Nov 2011

Automotive manufacturing in the UK bucked the economic trend last year, with latest figures showing an increase in production volumes, turnover, level of investment and number of employees.

A report from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) shows that the automotive industry made ‘significant improvements against a series of performance indicators’ during 2010.

Year on year, manufacturing turnover was up to £49bn as output rose by 27.8%, marking a return to pre-recession volumes.

Following David Cameron’s recent drive to push UK exports and support UK manufacturers, the automotive sector has led the way. The number of vehicles exported was up 31%, totaling £29bn. Additionally, new automotive apprenticeships were up 9% – adding to the 737,000 jobs within the industry.

The figures did not come at the expense of reducing CO2 emissions, which were down 10.5% per vehicle produced. Energy use and manufacturing waste to landfill produced per vehicle were both down by 8%.

Commenting on the report released today, Paul Everitt, SMMT chief executive, said: “We are making significant steps towards creating a globally competitive UK automotive sector, whilst also improving our environmental credentials to ensure a strong, long-term future for the industry. Manufacturing is vital to a rebalanced economy and cleaner, greener processes will support the transition to a low carbon future.”

Mr Everitt continued: “Automotive continues to attract major international investment, create high value jobs and cut its environmental impact but the UK must continue to compete on a global platform to secure future growth. We must incentivise private sector investment in R&D, training and equipment and ensure our commitment to be a leader in low carbon manufacturing supports our international competitiveness.”

The report concluded that for this growth to continue, the government should work to minimise the regulatory burden and reporting requirements.

Tom Moore