The Brexit effect on imported Tools
It is sad but true, those well known Tools made by brands that we Brits have been using for years, are in the main part all now manufactured overseas. Even trusty stalwarts like Brittool Tools are largely produced outside of the UK. This of course is mainly the result of a prolonged period of inexpensive manufacturing in the far east, principally China. The slump in sterling’s value since the UK voted to leave the European Union in June 2016 has put a new slant on things though.
It is now costing significantly more for these well know brands to import their products, and price increases are well and truly on the way. We’ve already received notifications from literally dozens of brands that their ability to absorb these increases is now exhausted and new price lists are at the printers! We expect this trend to continue throughout the first half of 2017 at the very least.
Could this actually be good news though?
Is a renaissance in British manufactured tools and equipment about to emerge as an unlikely, but very welcome, consequence of the pound’s recent poor fortune? Traditional bastions of British engineering like Sheffield (famed for its steel production), could be poised to take advantage of this situation.
Tools manufactured in the UK a thing of the future? It’s an unpleasant fact that over the last 2 decades, a very significant number of manufacturing jobs at many tool companies in the UK, have been lost. What is needed now is some imaginative thinking from Government to incentivise these companies to re-invest in plant and equipment, re-staff the workshop floor, and reignite the great British manufacturing tradition.
The Trump effect
Early indications from the new leader of the free World, seem to suggest that a stronger UK – USA trade agreement could be with us in the very near future. British made tools have a great reputation in the USA. If trade between the two countries becomes easier, this represents a massive new market for UK based tooling suppliers to exploit.
Don’t forget – we called it first!