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Plant production still strong in UK

THE production of construction plant remains one of the UKs great strengths in the manufacturing sector and must be maintained.

That was the message last week from John Patterson, JCBs sales director and the president of the Federation of Manufacturers of Construction Equipment and Cranes (FMCEC).

Reminding delegates at the FMCECs annual conference that 31 per cent of construction equipment manufactured in Europe originates in the UK, he outlined the need for policies to create a strong home market as a springboard for exports. He also hit out at government inattention to the threat posed to our construction industry by a lack of investment in, and underfunding of, our infrastructure.

Also speaking at the conference, David Turnbull, director of the UK Industrial Group, called for the introduction of an independent National Investment Bank as a means of co-ordinating investment strategy, together with fiscal measures such as the abolition of Capital Gains Tax on industrial profits and the possible use of National Lottery funds to help industry start- ups.