As Theresa May prepares to fly to Salzburg for a gathering of EU leaders, Britain’s top manufacturing exporter, the chemical industry, has warned time is running out.
The Chemical Industries Association (CIA) which represents all sizes of chemical businesses in the UK said ‘we need a Brexit deal and hope part of it will include our continued involvement in European chemicals legislation.’
Steve Elliott, chief executive of the CIA said the “white paper’s commitment to continuing involvement is crucial for chemical and pharmaceutical businesses across the UK. We are now desperately short of time to undertake the necessary registrations into a new UK agency that would then allow us to continue trading with the member states of the European Union. The Salzburg summit will be an important signal in advance of the October Council and the potential November signing ceremony. I hope the Prime Minister gets the right support in Salzburg to finish the negotiations and deliver the certainty we all need.”
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- The chemical and pharmaceutical industry adds £18 billion of value to the UK economy every year from total annual turnover of £50 billion.
- In addition to gross value added, the sector also contributes to the UK economy in its position at the head of many supply chains within manufacturing and its employment of a well remunerated, high-skilled workforce. We support 500,000 jobs both directly and indirectly Chemical manufacturing adds £9 billion in gross value added annually and pharmaceutical manufacturing £9 billion.
- The wider chemical and pharmaceutical sector (manufacturing plus distribution) is the largest exporter of manufactured goods with annual exports of over £50 billion. The export of motor vehicle, trailers and semi-trailers is the sector with next highest exports of £35 billion. Aerospace is £32 billion.
- 63% of companies in the sector export what they make to the world, the highest proportion of any goods manufacturing sector in the UK economy. 60% of our exports go to the European Union and 75% of our imports and raw materials come from the European Union.
- The sector’s level of business investment is £4.3 billion, compared to the automotive’s £2.7 billion and aerospace’s £2.1 billion, while the expenditure on research & development is £5 billion (automotive £2.7 billion and aerospace £2.1 billion).
- The products and technologies of the Chemical industry are essential parts of medicines, food & drink, telecommunications, energy-saving, I.T, clothing and much more.
- For every tonne of Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emitted, our products and technologies enable over 2 tonnes of GHG emissions savings.