Lawmakers to get vote on new Brexit referendum

LONDON – British Prime Minister Theresa May says Parliament will get the chance to vote on whether to hold a new referendum on Britain’s EU membership, as she tries to get lawmakers to back her divorce deal with the European Union.May says Tuesday that an EU withdrawal agreement bill that she plans to bring to Parliament next month will include a provision for a vote on whether to hold a new public poll on whether to leave. That is a key demand of many opposition lawmakers.May is offering concessions in what she says is a “last chance” to secure an orderly British departure from the bloc.The deal that she struck with the EU has been rejected by UK lawmakers three times already.The Cabinet met for three hours to work out details of what May has called a “bold offer” to win support for her Brexit agreement.Britain was due to leave the EU on March 29, but the bloc extended the deadline until Oct. 31 amid the political impasse. Talks on securing a compromise between May’s Conservatives and the opposition Labour Party broke down last week.___Follow AP’s full coverage of Brexit at: Associated Press read more

Suppliers discuss how to plug the gap in the UK supply chain

Representatives from the UK automotive supply chain and global car manufacturers have been discussing ways to reduce the current gap in the UK supply chain, worth at least £3 billion, at today’s SMMT International Automotive Summit.Delegates representing a range of automotive component and materials suppliers, as well as OEMs with manufacturing facilities in the UK, identified a number of factors that are limiting growth of suppliers.According to research undertaken by Jaguar Land Rover, 29% of UK-based SMEs list a shortage of skilled workers and apprentices as their primary reason for reduced growth  and reluctance to pitch for larger contracts. Meanwhile, 18% of SMEs cited reluctance from investors as a key reason for slow growth.Chris Gane, Divisional Managing Director at Caparo, suggested that it was the role of OEMs to combine their requirements so that SMEs are able to make investments based on larger contacts which would pose a lesser risk to financiers. Luis Olivié, Global Business Development Director at Achilles, suggested that OEMs would also be able to reduce supply chain risk and increase transparency by implementing supply chain mapping.With an increased emphasis based on reducing risk, many manufacturers with UK-based manufacturing facilities are keen to seek out supply contracts from British suppliers. Investment in UK automotive manufacturing has experienced an upturn in recent years. In 2013/14 Jaguar Land Rover has increased its supplier spend by 70% compared to 2011/12; it believes that there is potential for this to increase by a further 50% by 2017.Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) read more