CEO Update

Why we need stability to reach our true potential

26 April 2019 #CEO Update

The CV Show 2019 opens at the NEC next week, with thousands of visitors registered to attend the UK’s largest commercial vehicle show. It’s no wonder that the event will feature world-first industry launches, because the country remains a vital market for the commercial vehicle sector. At the show we’ll be launching a new report looking at the van market and aims to give a snapshot of how it has grown and why.

LCVs are an important part of the market and a strong business bellwether – sole traders and SMEs can often feel the impact of what’s happening in the economy much faster than larger companies. There are now more than four million vans on UK roads, making them the UK’s economic workhorses, driving growth and innovation. Join us on the SMMT stand if you are visiting the NEC, we look forward to seeing you there.

Production figures for the first quarter of 2019 are also due out next week. There has been a lot of market turbulence in recent months, resulting in topsy-turvy figures that make it difficult to get a true reflection on what is happening with longer-term trends. Plant shutdowns and other measures such as model stockpiling were introduced in recent months to mitigate the effects of the expected Brexit date on 29 March, which didn’t happen but threw long-term planning into disarray.

The market craves stability in order to thrive – and that doesn’t just mean Brexit, which continues to be a source of much uncertainty for many businesses, but also matters such as local emission zones and vehicle taxation. People running company fleets and manufacturers who are investing for the long term want to know that there is considered, long-term policy being put in place as they invest significant sums of money. Only with stability and the right conditions for investment will we see the UK automotive industry grow and reach its true potential.