BRENTWOOD, England - Ford’s UK-based apprentices recently supported the launch of the British Government’s new “Make it in Great Britain” initiative, which aims to boost the image of UK manufacturing and to raise awareness of its importance to the economy.
The Ford apprentices are based at Ford’s diesel engine production plant at Dagenham and at Bridgend in Wales, where petrol engine production is centred.
UK Business Secretary, Vince Cable, and Business Minister, Mark Prisk, launched the campaign at the Department for Business, Innovations and Skills in Westminster, London recently, where industry experts, apprentices and prospective future engineers met to discuss modern manufacturing and careers.
Vince Cable said: “Manufacturing is our most exportable sector and is at the heart of our long term economic vision. We have outstanding manufacturing companies, both large and small and today I want to call on them to join us in being part of the Make it in Great Britain campaign.”
In supporting the campaign, Joe Greenwell, chairman, Ford of Britain became one of the first ‘industry champions’.
“I am very happy to represent Ford during the Government’s Make it in Great Britain campaign,” he said. “Ford has a strong manufacturing reputation in the UK and today builds nearly two million engines annually at our Bridgend and Dagenham engine plants, 30,000 Transit Vans at Southampton, and over 500,000 transmissions at Halewood transmission plant, as part of the Getrag-Ford joint venture.”
Make it in Great Britain will culminate at the Science Museum in London during the Olympic Games in 2012, with an exhibition highlighting the success of UK manufacturing and encouraging younger people to consider a career in the industry.
In 2009, manufacturing was the third largest sector in the UK economy after business services and the wholesale/retail sector, generating around £140bn in gross value added. In 2010 the UK manufacturing sector employed 2.5 million people - 8% of total UK employment. UK exports of manufactured goods totalled £235bn – accounting for over 55% of all UK exports.
For more information visit www.bis.gov.uk/makeitingreatbritain