Alok Sharma

Letter from Secretary of State Alok Sharma MP to the Manufacturing Sector 8 April 2020

To those working in manufacturing and industry in the UK

At this unprecedented time for the UK I want to pay tribute to you for the work you are doing to keep the UK economy going.
As you know, the Government’s priority is saving lives and we have advised that where possible, people should stay at home and work from home. However, our country needs your support to keep supply chains moving and key workers mobile, as well as to protect the economy as much as possible. Every business has a role to play in helping the country defeat coronavirus.

Manufacturing is a critical part of our economy and I would like to be clear that there is no restriction on manufacturing continuing under the current rules. Guidelines from Public Health England provide best practice advice on how this can be done safely. Many across aerospace, chemical, automotive, steel, aluminium, pharmaceutical, packaging and other sectors, including those providing essential services and materials, have answered the call to action and are playing a direct role in combatting COVID-19 by producing the material we need to fight the spread of the virus. It is vital that we ensure that servicing, parts and raw materials are available to keep vehicles and services on the road and operating. I would like to give you all my personal thanks for everything you are doing.

Those who cannot work from home and have to travel to work can continue to do so, consistent with the Chief Medical Officer’s advice. I would remind both you and your employers that good practice on hand-washing and social distancing where possible remains an important part of efforts to keep COVID-19 from spreading, as explained in the latest guidance on operating safely in the workplace. Further Government guidance is available on GOV.UK.

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