CEO of the Materials Processing Institute, Chris McDonald, has voiced the needs of the North East’s manufacturing sector to senior policy makers at 10 Downing Street.
In meetings organised by the CBI, McDonald met with Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), Greg Clarke MP, Iain Wright MP, Chair of the BEIS Select Committee and James Wharton MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for International Development.
Also meeting the Prime Minister’s policy team at 10 Downing Street, Mr McDonald was privy to the Government’s emerging industrial strategy.
Along with his role at the Middlesbrough-based industrial research company, McDonald is also the innovation lead on the UK Metals Council.
He commented: “In unusual global, political times, it is vital that the UK has a strategy, which responds to the needs of industry, and keeps businesses innovative and competitive in international markets.
“I am grateful to the CBI for arranging the opportunity for me to raise and discuss a range of issues with senior figures, to ensure that the North East region remains on the radar as plans are drawn up for infrastructural and industrial development.
“This is particularly important as we approach the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement – an opportunity for the new Government to outline its plans for development of foundation industries.”
Last month, McDonald outlined the challenges and opportunities of Brexit in a public lecture entitled ‘The Effect of Brexit on Innovation’.
The report sets out the opportunities for growth within the UK industry and highlights the need for a new industrial strategy, with innovation at its core. It also stressed the importance of long-term planning and drew attention to the benefits of the establishment of a Catapult for the Foundation Industries.
McDonald concluded: “The Institute has been working closely with government in recent years to further industry’s request for a Catapult for the Foundation Industries. The Institute will renew its approach with incoming ministers and continue to campaign in the interests of UK industry.”