Digby Jones: Manufacturing sector is vital to the UK

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Digby Jones writes to the editor of the Financial Times:

“Sir, John Kay misses the point, and dangerously so, in “Our fetish for making things fails to understand ‘real work’” (November 14). The public sector depends for every one of its jobs, its investment and its ability to serve the public on the tax-generating wealth and jobs that are created by the private sector . . .”

Despite this, however:

“We don’t make things any more” from a journalist and “If you don’t work hard in class you’ll end up in a place like this” from a teacher to pupils on a tour of a factory are words I have often heard or been told about over the past decade.”

He believes that the UK is en route to using manufacturing to lessen its reliance on the financial services sector and concludes:

“If we are to develop a more balanced and globally competitive economy, we must encourage greater investment in people and kit to create the wealth we need, not denigrate manufacturing with pejorative labels.” 

Digby Jones, Temple Grafton, Warwicks, UK, Minister of State for Trade and Investment 2007-08

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