Chemical industry leaders discussed the upcoming Brexit negotiations with a Government minister, in the latest business sector roundtable hosted by the Department for Exiting the European Union (DExEU).
DExEU Minister Robin Walker chaired the meeting and discussed the opportunities Brexit could present for the second largest UK manufacturing export sector, which employs around 94,000 people.
The meeting was the latest in a series of roundtable discussions, as Ministers continue to consult industry leaders and hear their priorities ahead of the decision to trigger Article 50, when negotiations for the UK to leave the EU will begin.
Topics discussed included investment into research and development, energy supply, the regulatory framework and skills provision.
DExEU Minister Robin Walker said:
My message to the industry is that Britain is the same outward-looking, globally-minded, big-thinking country we have always been, and that leaving the EU offers us an opportunity to forge a new role for ourselves in the world.
I look forward to working with the chemical industry, as we embark on this historic and positive moment for our nation and get the best deal for Britain’s businesses and manufacturers.
By listening to their concerns and discussing opportunities, the Government is seeking to limit uncertainty in the transition and ensure a new relationship with the EU which works for businesses and Britain.
Nick Sturgeon, Energy and Competitiveness Director of the Chemical Industries Association, said:
As a major exporter of manufactured goods, this was an early important opportunity for the country’s chemical and pharmaceutical business leaders.
The Government does have a clear understanding of what we need – single market access, availability of people, affordable and secure energy and a science policy that stimulates growth - in order that our companies can continue delivering for the UK.
We are looking forward to working with Robin Walker and his team in trying to secure the best deal we can for our sector and for the country.
Senior executives attended from the following business and trade associations:
- Chemical Industries Association
- Thomas Swan and Co.
- Johnson Matthey
- Fujifilm Diosynth Biotechologies
- Biorenewables Development Centre
- Shott Trinova
- Oxford Biotrans