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Britain’s Chemical Industry Fuelling UK Growth: A Plan for the Next Government

Alex Cunningham MP and Chair of the Chemical Industry APPG , centre, with CIA’s ChemTalent members Jonathan Vincent, Amy Summerton, Izzy Sloan and Lucy Jones.

Chemical Industries Association

3 min read Partner content

The Chemical Industries Association launched its manifesto in parliament emphasising the role of the UK chemical industry as a key building block of the economy.

The next government of the United Kingdom faces the formidable task of ensuring prosperity for all regions of the country. Its success will be measured by its ability to foster economic growth, advance environmental progress, and social inclusion. Central to achieving these goals will be partnerships with businesses, particularly within the advanced manufacturing sector, which offers innovative clean technology solutions and jobs essential for a resilient, sustainable, and inclusive economic future.

As a key building block of the economy, the chemical industry should be at the heart of that economic, environmental and social ambition. The sector is the country’s largest manufacturing exporter with annual exports of over £54bn; it has already reduced emissions by 80% over the past 30 years and thousands of highly skilled and well-rewarded jobs located in parts of the country that really need them. With 4,415 businesses directly employing 151,000 individuals and supporting over 500,000 jobs, the chemical industry is vital to the country’s prosperity.  

In support of this vision, the Chemical Industries Association (CIA) launched its manifesto in Parliament at the beginning of the year. The manifesto outlines a strategic vision positioning the UK chemical industry as a key driver of economic, environmental, and social progress.

 

The manifesto's key recommendations include:

  • A UK industrial strategy with chemical businesses at its heart
  • A stable UK policy environment
  • Innovation incentivised to lead to UK manufacture
  • Secure and competitive energy for all
  • A net zero transition that creates UK business opportunities
  • Trade agreements that deliver for businesses in the UK
  • A UK education and visa system that provides talent for industry
Sarah Jones MP and Lord Fox.
Sarah Jones MP and Lord Fox.

The launch event saw the support from influential speakers, including Alex Cunningham MP, Chair of the Chemical Industry All-Party Parliamentary Group; Sarah Jones MP, Shadow Minister for Industry and Decarbonisation; and Nusrat Ghani MP, then Minister for Industry and Economic Security. Their presence demonstrated the significance of our manifesto to the next government’s agenda.

A key theme of the manifesto is the creation of a lasting legacy that empowers future generations. This was highlighted by the involvement of the CIA's ChemTalent Leadership Group, an early careerist network committed to shaping the industry's future. Key members leading the network Amy Summerton from SABIC Petrochemicals, leader of the group and winner of the Young Ambassador Award 2023, along with Lucy Jones from Croda International, Jonathan Vincent from INEOS Electrochemical Solutions, and Izzy Sloan from GSK, attended the event, demonstrating the dedication of young professionals to the industry's advancement.

The upcoming general election will bring new leadership, but it will also find an engaged and committed UK chemicals sector ready to collaborate for the nation's prosperity.

The document can be downloaded from the Chemical Industries Association website.

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