Brexit-pocalypse? Surge in UK Car Manufacturing, Huge Investment in Research Centres, New Factories


New figures show British car manufacturing surged 8.5 percent in 2018, as the country is enjoying a slew of investments in research and new factories.

84,888 commercial vehicles rolled off British production lines in 2018, according to the latest figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), as the market recovers from a slowdown in demand precipitated in part by new diesel regulations.

Domestic demand rose by 17.9 percent, with an extra 5,248 units shifted, while exports increased by 2.9 percent to 50,320 units.

The Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC), part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI), has meanwhile announced a massive investment programme, spending £444 million to establish 75 Centres for Doctoral Training (CDTs).

The Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) will contribute a further £2.2 million to the pot, while 1,400 industry partners will contribute £386 million in cash and in-kind support.

“The successful Centres will focus on cohort-based doctoral training and cover a wide range of fields, from Medical Imaging to Quantum Engineering, Offshore Renewable Energy to Statistical Applied Mathematics,” explained Professor Sir Ian Diamond, who will serve as Overall Chairman of the CDT panels.

Science and Innovation Minister Chris Skidmore said the investments were part of “an increase of over £7 billion invested in R&D over five years to 2021/22 – the highest increase for over 40 years”, as Britain seeks to support the “skilled people [needed] to turn ideas into inventions that can have a positive impact on our daily lives.”

British manufacturing has also racked up a number of other successes in recent days, little remarked upon by the mainstream media, including a £1 million contract for Derbyshire-based overhead cranes & hoists manufacturer Street Crane, the announcement of a new Epwin Group factor employing 200 people in Telford, and Ginetta announcing an all-new supercar to be hand-built at a facility on the outskirts of Leeds, West Yorkshire, among many others.

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