Energy security, innovation and re-building UK supply chains are some of the key challenges set out in a new strategy for the chemical sector.
Business Secretary Vince Cable and Business Minister Michael Fallon will today (Tuesday 22 October) meet business leaders – including Johnson Matthey and SABIC - to take forward the industry-led strategy which sets a vision of 50% growth of the sector by 2030.
Among the issues for discussion for the newly formed Chemistry Growth Partnership (CGP) will be the importance of shale gas, the establishment of a centre to foster innovation and a strengthening of relationships between major companies and SME's.
Vince Cable also met the chemical processing company Thomas Swan yesterday (Monday 21 October) who will lead on supply chain development work.
The Business Secretary said:
“The chemical industry in the UK is already a leading exporter but there are considerable future growth opportunities if we can create the right conditions. Key to this is a strengthening of our supply chains so chemical technologies and products are sourced in this country rather than overseas. By working together with business on a long-term vision, we can build confidence to invest, grow and create British jobs in one of our most important sectors.”
Business Minister and co-chair of the CGP Michael Fallon said:
“As we move to a low carbon economy, it is imperative that the UK chemical industry is at the forefront of innovation and has a skilled workforce adaptable to changing technologies. Working with industry, we can confront any challenges early and ensure the sector is building on its already impressive track record.”
Chief Executive of Johnson Matthey and co-chair of the CGP Neil Carson said:
"The products and technologies of the chemical industry are delivering huge benefits for society including vital medicines, food and climate change solutions. Growing the sector in the UK is critical for the economy, social progression and the environment."
NOTES TO EDITORS:
For further comment/interview, please contact Simon Marsh 07951 389 197 or MarshS@cia.org.uk
The chemical industry in the UK:
• Contributes £75 million every day to the UK economy
• spends over £5 billion each year on research and development
• invests almost £2 billion a year in capital expenditure
• generates a trade surplus of £5 billion every year
• Provides employment for over half a million people in well-paid jobs
And is the nation’s number one manufacturing exporter