Britain’s £50 billion chemical and pharmaceutical industry continues to show solid growth in 2015.

In the latest survey of its members by the Chemical Industries Association, most companies predict they will increase sales in the next 12 months. Added to this, almost 40% of businesses will increase capital expenditure.

Survey results also indicate healthy growth in exports, employee numbers and spending on Research and Development over the next twelve months.

Official data shows chemical manufacturers achieved a 10% increase in productivity between 2008 and 2014.

This has continued into 2015 with 60% of companies responding to the survey reporting increased productivity over the last twelve months.

Official numbers reflected business leaders’ confidence and the sectors position as our number one manufacturing exporter with chemical industry exports to the USA increasing by 65% in the five months to May compared with the same period in 2015, 19% of all UK chemical exports.

Pharmaceuticals exports to the USA increased by 124% to now be 33% of all chemical exports.

The weak euro affected exports to the rest of the EU and chemical exports to the European Union fell by 8.6% but were still 55% of all chemical exports. Pharmaceuticals exports to Europe fell by 9% but are still 42% of all of our pharmaceutical exports.

 Steve Elliott, Chief Executive of the Chemical Industries Association, said “These latest results show how chemical and pharmaceutical businesses are grasping opportunities to compete on the world stage.

“What we need for the future is Government action on energy policy and especially shale gas, plus a continued framework for innovation to drive productivity and growth. I am confident this will convince global companies to continue to invest in the UK and ensure we continue to deliver a positive environmental, social and economic performance across the UK”.