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11 April 2013 | Adam Leach
British industry should follow Jaguar Land Rover's example of investing in the supply chain to strengthen domestic capability to boost exports, according to the CBI.
The Only Way is Exports, published today, called for sectors across British business to identify skills, quality and performance gaps in their specific supply chains and invest to improve them. It held up Jaguar Land Rover and Rolls-Royce as examples of businesses that put time and money into developing suppliers, through offering supply chain finance, providing funding and building strong relationships with their supply chains.
“There is plenty of scope to strengthen the UK supply chain network – helping businesses invest in skills, quality and performance improvement, innovation and physical capital,” the report said. “This requires cross-sector analysis to determine areas where there are gaps, as well as needing more intensive co-operation between UK businesses of all sizes.”
The study, which concerned what the UK should do to boost exports and in particular SME exports, also called for the government to work closely with industry on reviewing the policy around night-time flights. It said that business and government should protect night-time flights to maintain airfreight capacity so goods and supplies, in particular critical or time-sensitive items, can be delivered quickly.
The CBI also recommended the government should review the practical impact of the Bribery Act on UK businesses competitiveness abroad - echoing the sentiments of a House of Lords committee - to set out which industries will have visa processes streamlined to attract talent, and work to get strong protection for intellectual property across Europe.