TNB News

Competitive, not complacent – preparing for growth in 2023

15 December 2022 #TNB News

UK commercial vehicle (CV) production has been buoyant during 2022, with output in October at the highest level for the month since 2019, resulting in the tenth consecutive month of growth this year. Exports continued their double-digit rise, increasing by 50.2% to 5,905 units thanks to strong demand from overseas markets, with the vast majority (94.5%) destined for Europe. This is evidence of how Britain’s CV manufacturers continued success is contingent on suitable trading terms, and a globally competitive business framework is needed to bolster operator confidence.

Given the strong performance it is vital that we continue to provide our CV production facilities in the UK with the conditions to excel.

Manufacturing facilities are dependent on parts and components from around the world. We’ve seen UK CV manufacturers having to juggle turbulent global supply chains, with every sector continuing to focus on overcoming supply chain shortages that have impacted production in the UK and abroad since 2020.

The main concern is rising energy costs, which is where Britain is less competitive than its neighbours, with the highest bills of all leading economies in Europe. Clearly, with the need for the UK to invest in more energy consumption technologies like battery fuel cell production, production demand for energy will only increase. To attract that investment as we enter another critical year, UK Automotive needs a long-term plan that delivers the necessary funding and fiscal support, as well as sustainable supply of low-carbon energy that will drive down production costs.

The UK’s CV sector is well-placed to build high-quality vehicles, with industry growth and exports contributing to some of the most exciting, well-paid, skilled jobs that Britain has to offer. As the industry looks to 2023 with optimism, we cannot be complacent, as sustained growth is dependent on every stakeholder playing their part, particularly during times of great challenge – and opportunity.


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