Clearview Midlands February 2014 - Issue 147 - Page 75

BUSINESSNEWS NEW GOVERNMENT SUPPORT TO ENCOURAGE MANUFACTURING PRODUCTION BACK TO THE UK UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) has joined forces with the Manufacturing Advisory Service (MAS) to launch Reshore UK, a new 1-stop-shop service to help companies bring production back to the UK. UK companies are increasingly looking to reshore manufacturing, textiles, software production and call centre work to the UK instead of outsourcing overseas. This is due to the combination of a strong and stable economy, competitive corporate tax rates, a good regulatory environment, strong legal frameworks and a dynamic labour market. UKTI has identified 1,500 manufacturing jobs reshored in the UK since 2011 and a MAS survey shows companies citing costs, quality and reducing lead times as the top 3 reasons for moving production back to the UK. Reshore UK will provide a matching and location service, access to advice and support and a named individual to help each company. MAS’s role is to help support small and medium sized businesses to be globally competitive and to ensure there is capacity in the UK supply chain to take advantage of the reshoring opportunities. UKTI will use its global networks to attract foreign companies to invest. The new service will be accessible for both UK and international firms and will ensure that they get the right support, when they need it most. It sees government working in partnership with industry in line with the Industrial Strategy, giving business the confidence to invest, creating more jobs and growth in the UK. UK SMES ENCOURAGED TO USE €3 BILLION DEVELOPMENT POT Up to €3 billion of product development money has been made available to UK SMEs from January 1st 2014. As part of the wider Horizon 2020 project, the Dedicated SME Instrument will allow companies to draw down up to €3 million each. Support organisation Pera Technology says that the European Commission is obliged to respond to funding applications within six months. Businesses must demonstrate market demand to qualify for the funding, and may also claim up to 15 days free coaching. Paul Tranter, chief executive of Pera Technology, said: “Never before has this level of funding been made available to small and medium sized business for new product development purposes. “One of the key differences between Horizon 2020, its predecessors and other public funding options is its commercial awareness. SMEs receive all of the money to spend as they see fit with a further 15 days of free coaching paid for directly by the European Commission. “Only products that demonstrate a clear commercial demand will receive funding, meaning it’s those products closer to market that are likely to be most successful. However, for companies earlier on in the development process there is additional funding available for initial research purposes. “The UK is in an enviable position, having overtaken the two largest economies in Europe in terms of bidding success. However, we can’t rest on our laurels. The larger amount of funding and fewer restrictions associated with Horizon 2020 will see more businesses than ever before applying.” Budget 2014: Have your say Have your say on what you would like to see in Budget 2014. The government is seeking your views on what you would like to see in Budget 2014, which will take place on 19 March 2014. ‘Business, charities and members of the public’ To read more, visit In the interest of open and transparent policy-making, the government welcomes original and innovative ideas, which will be considered by HM Treasury. Business, charities and