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5 minute read - 26th November 2023

Government provides detail on landmark advanced manufacturing plan

Plans to build on British excellence in advanced manufacturing have been unveiled by business secretary Kemi Badenoch, providing crucial support to the UK’s manufacturing sector and helping to secure long-term private investment and the highly-skilled jobs of the future.

The landmark Advanced Manufacturing Plan (AMP) sets out the government’s initiative to ensure the UK is the best place in the world to start and grow a manufacturing business. As outlined by the chancellor last week, the government will offer certainty to business by committing more than £4.5bn in targeted funding to back the long-term future of the UK’s world-leading manufacturing industries – automotive, aerospace, clean energy and life sciences. This includes support for batteries and industries undergoing fundamental changes to remain at the forefront of the global transition to net zero.

The plan outlines the key measures to improve the business environment and attract investment, including faster grid connections, full expensing and more apprenticeships. The business secretary said it will ensure the UK uses its competitive advantage in manufacturing to become a leader in the development of zero emissions technology, taking advantage of the thousands of jobs on offer, adding the world-leading track record of decarbonisation makes the UK well placed to seize opportunities in the new global green economy.

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The government has given more detail on the Advanced Manufacturing Plan (AMP), with over £2bn earmarked for the automotive industry, including batteries, and £975m for aerospace / Picture: Getty/iStock

The package builds on recent industry investment wins including a £2bn investment from Nissan in Sunderland, the £4bn Tata gigafactory, the £600m electric Mini investment from BMW and Boeing unlocking £80m of aerospace manufacturing investment in Sheffield.

Kemi Badenoch, business secretary, said: “The UK recently overtook France to become the world’s eighth largest manufacturing economy. The Advanced Manufacturing Plan will build on that success by targeting funding at where we have a competitive advantage. Industry wants a stable, long-term plan that has support for cutting edge technologies and a trade policy that delivers. The Advanced Manufacturing Plan does precisely that, securing the highly-skilled jobs of the future and driving economic growth.”

The advanced manufacturing plan

Attracting investment

The government says the battery sector alone could create 100,000 highly paid and skilled jobs in the UK, with thousands of further jobs available in the wider sector, with the government publishing the UK’s first ever Battery Strategy. It will seek to invest £50m in developing the UK’s battery capabilities, emphasising the importance of developing the batteries of the future by leveraging the UK’s world-leading research and innovation, securing a resilient UK manufacturing supply chain, and enabling the development of a vibrant and sustainable sector.

It added that global companies are already choosing to invest in the UK, with every pound of government investment in the future of manufacturing leveraging five pounds of additional private sector investment. The strategy laid out for the Advanced Manufacturing Plan intends to build on this success and ensure the right conditions are created for manufacturing to flourish, and that bureaucracy does not get in the way of investment.

The government says the advanced manufacturing strategy will secure long-term private investment and create high-paid jobs / Picture: Getty/iStock

Boost for Made Smarter

To boost growth in small and medium sized manufacturing businesses more widely, the government will expand the Made Smarter adoption programme, offering the scheme to all English regions in 2025-26 before working with the devolved administrations to explore expanding the programme further from 2026-27.

Investing in the future of UK manufacturing

A new Hydrogen Taskforce will maximise investment opportunities for the UK manufacturing of hydrogen propulsion systems. Hydrogen is expected to represent a crucial part of the UK’s future net zero energy system and is critical to supporting the UK’s energy security.

The government’s Hydrogen Strategy sets out ambitions to reach up to 10GW of hydrogen production capacity by 2030, with at least half coming from electrolytic or green hydrogen.

Reducing costs and barriers to business

At the Autumn Statement, the chancellor announced further measures to back businesses and remove barriers to investment. This includes making the full expensing scheme permanent so businesses can invest for less – delivering an effective permanent tax cut of £11bn a year for businesses who invest in IT equipment, plant and machinery. The move is set to boost business investment by £14bn.

With the tax cut now permanent, the UK will continue to have both the lowest headline corporation tax rate in the G7 and the most generous capital allowances in the OECD group of major advanced economies, such as the United States, Japan, South Korea and Germany. Since the introduction of the super deduction – the predecessor to full expensing – in 2021, investment in the UK has grown the fastest in the G7.

To boost growth in small and medium sized manufacturing businesses, the government will expand the Made Smarter adoption programme / Picture: Getty/iStock

The Advanced Manufacturing Plan also builds on existing support for the sector that includes the British Industry Supercharger, ensuring energy costs for key industries like steel, metals, chemicals, and paper producers are in line with other major economies around the world, and the Industrial Energy Transformation Fund, supporting the deployment of technologies that is enabling hundreds of businesses with high energy use to transition to a low carbon future.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, concluded: “We are going full throttle to back British businesses and make the UK a world leader in manufacturing – which already makes up over 43 percent of all our exports and employs 2.6 million people across the country.  Today’s plan will not only give the industry the long-term certainty they need to grow and invest further in the UK, but it will also lay the foundations to create more jobs and opportunities for people across the country.

“As we bring together the world’s biggest CEOs and investors together for the global investment summit tomorrow, this plan – backed by £4.5 billion – and the record sums of investment we’ve already attracted, make undoubtedly clear that the UK is open for business and is a vital part of our plan to grow the economy.”

Download the Advanced Manufacturing Plan below:

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