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With a deal still yet to be struck and a strong possibility of ‘no-deal’, many have suggested that UK manufacturing will face disastrous consequences. However, some recent studies have found that certain sectors are performing unexpectedly well despite the political and economic turmoil – including the panel building and system integration markets.
A recent report from MTW Research (https://bit.ly/2TgdLOW) has suggested that the panel building industry could be boosted by £10 million in 2019 as a result of growth in artificial intelligence and modular migration. Based on sales data of 80% of UK panel builders, the research showed a great deal of optimism from panel builders despite the looming Brexit deadline.
Similarly, a report by Global Market Insights (https://bit.ly/2H3RGMN) suggests that the global system integration market could surpass $450 billion by 2024. Add to this the new BARA integrator certification scheme (pg.6), the government’s Industrial Strategy, the Made Smarter programme, and the growing interest in robotics and automation, it is clear that there are great developments and opportunities in the industry despite the doom and gloom of Brexit.
It is widely accepted that a ‘no-deal’ scenario would be catastrophic for UK manufacturing and would likely prevent any optimistic outlooks from coming to fruition. With a Brexit deal still seemingly far off, the examples of positivity could be a result of companies returning to normal operations rather than holding back on investment anymore as many initially did following the referendum in 2016.
The next month should continue to be as interesting and frustrating as the previous 21 months have been, but hopefully everything should become clearer. Personally, I believe the 29th March deadline will ultimately be postponed and not much will change for now. This could be both a blessing and a curse for industry. On the one hand, further confusion and turmoil is the last thing that the industry needs. On the other hand, with the recent optimism coming from industry reports, companies may be encouraged to return to normal and seek to invest. This would help create a period of stability and allow companies to finally begin planning for the future once again.
In all, hopefully the positive outlooks from these reports do become a reality and the Brexit impasse is resolved. Who knows what the next month will bring!
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