The Midlands Manufacturing Resilience Commission, or M2R as it has become known, gathered evidence from a series of roundtables, surveys and other contributions from senior representatives from industry, academia and other regional bodies, including the West Midlands Combined Authority, the Midlands Engine, the CBI, and financial institutions, such as Lloyds Bank.
This Report is a consolidation of those discussions, with a series of independently authored chapters focusing on the main themes, from supporting SMEs, skills and productivity to emerging technologies.
· The Government must match private sector investment in the Midlands at the same levels as it does for the rest of the UK, supporting initiatives such as the Speed to Scale programme
· Address fragmented support for manufacturing across the Midlands with balanced and enhanced package of support including capital allowances, R&D credits, access to growth capital and patient capital
· Provide financial protection for SMEs to take on bigger challenges and to move from start-up to scale-up through an improved growth capital programme: a Midlands Equity Fund
· Establish a gigafactory in the Midlands, drawing from our local supply chain as part of the levelling up agenda
· Create SME clusters in the region, to create supply chains for emerging markets and help SMEs pivot away from markets in decline
· Create an internship programme placing graduates into SMEs
· Create a productivity growth fund to support SMEs to adopt and deploy advanced manufacturing technologies based on the ‘Made Smarter’ initiative