Weekly Focus: EEF publishes low carbon economy report
This week EEF published The Low Carbon Economy – From Carrot to Stick. The report is manufacturing’s agenda for what reform of the UK’s energy and climate change policy should look like and examines three key areas where we believe policy is currently falling short;
- Energy efficiency and energy taxation policy
- Decarbonisation of energy intensive industry
- Low carbon innovation and making the most of the green economy
With the pace of industrial energy efficiency improvement having slowed considerably since 2000, and the Committee on Climate Change highlighting a significant policy gap in relation to meeting the Fourth Carbon Budget, government needs to change tack if the UK is to meet its future targets in a timely and cost effective manner. The report urges government to take a bold new approach to cut costs for energy users, reduce red-tape and better deliver reductions in industrial emissions.
EEF would also like to see government do more to ensure the opportunities presented by decarbonisation can be maximised by the UK’s manufacturers; a vital component of this is improving the environment for low-carbon innovation in the UK. Key recommendations from the report include:
- Government must look to reduce the overall burden of energy taxation and levies by the end of this Parliament, starting with the removal of Carbon Price Support
- Scrap the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme and replace with a new energy efficiency tax discount to more effectively drive business investment in energy efficiency
- Take forward the 2050 Industrial Decarbonisation Roadmaps to develop a comprehensive strategy for tackling emissions in energy intensive industry
- Government should increase the percentage of government R&D funding spent on energy and environment to at least match the EU average by reallocating funds from different areas.
For further information please Richard Warren, Senior Energy and Environment Policy Adviser
EEF’s Party Conference Programme
This year EEF will again be co-hosting business receptions and panel debates at the Conservative and Labour party conferences. Full details are available below. Please note that although the two panel events are open to anyone to attend, the business receptions are invitation-only, so if you would like to attend either of these please contact Rocky Lorusso on firstname.lastname@example.org or 020 7654 1575.
Labour Party Conference:
Business Reception with Demos, BCC, EEF, FSB, ACCA, ICAEW, IPSE (by invitation only)
Date/time: 18.00-19.30, Sunday 27 September
Venue: Brighton Musical Hall, 127 Kings Road Arches, Brighton, East Sussex, BN1 2FN
Angela Eagle MP, Shadow Business Secretary (invited)
Terry Scuoler, Chief Executive of EEF
Fabian Society/EEF Fringe Panel Event
Title: ‘The path to prosperity: solving Britain’s productivity puzzle’
Date/time: 12:30-13:45, Monday 28 September
Venue: Holiday Inn, BrightonVenue: Holiday Inn, Brighton
Stephen Doughty MP, Shadow Minister for Business, Innovation and Skills
Seema Malhotra MP (Chair)
Heather Stewart, Economics Editor, The Observer
Terry Scuoler, Chief Executive, EEF
Conservative Party Conference:
Business reception with Enterprise Forum, BCC, EEF, FSB, ACCA, ICAEW, IPSE (by invitation only)
Date/time: 17.45-19.00, Monday 5 October
Venue: Alexandra B, Midland Hotel, Manchester (secure area)
Rt Hon George Osborne MP, Chancellor of the Exchequer
Mike Cherry, Policy Director, FSB
Enterprise Forum/EEF Fringe Panel Event
Title: ‘Winning the global race – Delivering a strategy for British business success’
Date/time: 12.30-14.00, Tuesday 6 October
Venue: Arora Hotel, 18-24 Princess Street, Manchester M1 4LY
Rt Hon Anna Soubry MP, Minister for Small Business, Industry and Enterprise
Andrew Cumpsty, Chairman, Enterprise Forum (Chair)
Terry Scuoler, Chief Executive, EEF
Esther McVey, Founder, If Chloe Can and former employment minister
Future of steel sector on the agenda at UK Steel Forum
UK Steel has partnered with Tata Steel to deliver its biennial conference, the UK Steel Forum, which takes place on Thursday 24 September at One Great George Street in London. The event will provide a platform for the wider steel sector and its stakeholders to focus on the challenges and opportunities ahead. The key theme will be about the future of the sector. Industry leaders and speakers will lead a debate looking at changing perceptions, seizing supply chain opportunities, the sector’s response to the innovation challenge and the ever-rising surge of imports from low cost, low skilled markets such as China.
For more information or to register to attend, visit EEF’s website or call 0808 168 5874.
Fee for Intervention (FFI) survey
EEF will be making an evidence-based submission to the government’s review on the Fee for Intervention (FFI), and is urging members to complete a short survey on their experiences of the scheme. It was introduced by the Health and Safety Committee (HSE) in October 2012 and is a ‘cost recovery’ mechanism for reclaiming costs back from business for the time taken by HSE identifying ‘material breaches’ of health and safety legislation, helping business put it right and investigating and taking enforcement action.
When the scheme was introduced, the government made a commitment to publish a post-implementation review after three years of FFI coming into force. This three year period will come to an end at the end of September 2015, when EEF will be making its submission. Completing this survey should take no longer than 10 minutes and the data collected will form a key part of that submission. Your input and contribution is extremely valuable in providing an accurate reflection on the impact of the scheme.
For more information contact Terry Woolmer, Head of Health and Safety Policy
EEF meet Chair of the Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee
EEF met Iain Wright MP, Chair of the Business, Innovation and Skills Select Committee, to discuss the Committee’s work and potential future inquiries. EEF briefed Mr Wright on a range of issues, such as the future of the steel industry, trade and access to finance, which are issues he is interested in exploring further. We will continue our engage with the Select Committee to ensure manufacturers’ views are represented in future inquiries.
For more information contact Paul Raynes, Policy Director
EU update with leading Conservative
One of the Conservative Party’s leading pro-EU MPs, the former police and justice minister Damian Green, met with EEF Chief Executive Terry Scuoler and Director of External Affairs Hywel Jarman to discuss the latest issues in the debate over Britain’s future in the EU. Damian Green, who is the MP for Ashford, is Chairman of the Conservative European Mainstream Group, which is organising a number of EU-related fringe meetings at this year’s Conservative Party conference.
For more information contact Hywel Jarman, Director of External Affairs
Single Market Roundtable with Baroness Neville-Rolfe
EEF participated in a roundtable discussion about the single market with Baroness Neville-Rolfe at the Department of Business, Innovation and Services. The Roundtable focussed on the main barriers that prevent industries from exploiting the opportunities of the single market, and the extent to which different rules in different markets make it harder for industries to trade across the European Union. The key issues discussed included industrial competitiveness, the regulation of goods and services, and the digitalisation of industry. Baroness Neville-Rolfe indicated that the roundtable feeds into issues for the government to raise during the UK’s EU presidency in 2017, and that the meeting was the beginning of a process with more to be held in the future.
For more information contact Zach Witton, Deputy Chief Economist.
EEF meets new Labour MP for Stoke-on-Trent North
EEF met the new Labour MP for Stoke-on-Trent North Ruth Smeeth, as part of its ongoing engagement with new MPs from all parties. We briefed Ms Smeeth on manufacturers’ priorities around industrial strategy and productivity and heard about her priorities for the area. There are a number of manufacturing companies based in the Stoke-on-Trent area and EEF will continue to meet and brief new MPs with a particular interest in the sector and with a strong manufacturing base in their constituency.
For more information contact Paul Raynes, Policy Director.
In the media
EEF’s carbon report received widespread coverage in The Times (link unavailable), The Daily Telegraph and The Guardian.
The Sunday Times (£) referenced EEF in an article about the government’s immigration policy and its effects on overseas students graduating in the UK. EEF was also mentioned in an article about the slowdown in China’s economy in The Guardian.
UK Steel Director Gareth Stace was also interviewed on BBC Radio 5 Live and BBC Radio Tees on the future of the steel industry.
For more information contact Sophie Carroll, External Affairs Executive
Week in review
The annual rate of CPI inflation fell back to 0% in the year to August, after briefly moving to positive territory in July. The decline in the CPI was mostly down to falls in transport costs, particularly motor fuels, and clothing.
Labour market statistics
The ILO measure of unemployment increased by 10,000 in the three months to July compared with the three months to April, leaving the unemployment rate unchanged at 5.5%. However, this still represents a fall of 198,000 on a year earlier, when the unemployment rate was 6.2%. Similarly, the Claimant Count measure of unemployment – which records the number of people claiming Job Seekers’ Allowance and Universal Credit – rose by 1,200.
The week ahead
22nd Sept: Public sector finances
24th Sept: World trade
Blogs from this week
14 Sep 2015
Let's kickstart the next era for the UK Steel sector by Gareth Stace
14 Sep 2015
Decarbonising manufacturing: time for a new approach? By Paul Raynes
14 Sep 2015
Week ahead 14th September by Lee Hopley
15 Sep 2015
Inflation back at zero by Zach Witton
17 Sep 2015
Oops the (Tier 2 cap) did it again.... by Verity O’Keefe