Plant investment points to growing confidence in Norfolk

06:00 08 April 2014

Caroline Williams, chief executive of Norfolk Chamber

Caroline Williams, chief executive of Norfolk Chamber

Norfolk firms have upped their investment in plant and machinery in a further sign that the economic recovery is taking hold.

More businesses within the county’s manufacturing and services sector are freeing-up funds to buy new equipment, according to the British Chamber of Commerce’s (BCC) quarterly economic survey.

Fresh evidence suggests that profitability will pick up in Norfolk’s manufacturing sector, while more money will be spent on training, the survey said.

But Norfolk’s export balances in the services industry dipped slightly in the first quarter – although continued to remain strong over all.

Caroline Williams, chief executive of Norfolk Chamber, said: “It is great to see another positive set of results. Confidence in Norfolk is high and our members are determined to continue driving the recovery. We are brilliant at services and very successful at exporting our knowledge-based industries all over the world.

“This includes everything from accountancy and marketing through to literature and the IT sector.

“In addition, our manufacturing sector, despite a recent slow-down, continues to be strong. But Norfolk firms are tenacious and ambitious, and more support is needed if we are to place the recovery on a sustainable, broader footing in the medium-term.”

Meanwhile, John Longworth, director general of the BCC said: “We have witnessed many false dawns during the economic recovery, and external shocks still loom on the horizon.

“Given that over the next year or so we face political change at home and abroad, long-term policies that support our businesses as they look to grow and invest are crucial.

“Access to finance and export support also remain vital if we are to secure a truly great economic recovery. Only by repairing our broken business finance system will viable, growing firms gain access to the capital that will allow them to invest in their staff and machinery, and enter new markets.

“And despite recent falls, inflation remains a key concern for our businesses, and the Bank of England must strive to maintain an investment-friendly environment, with clarity on forward interest rates and action to keep inflation low.”

• Do you have investment plans for your business? Contact business writer Ben Woods on 01603 772426 or email

1 comment

  • That's right Williams. You jump on the bandwagon making out it is all down to the CoC, and trying to justify your existence What is it the CoC and you actually do for the good of the local economy then, apart from a talking shop for the otherwise unemployable ?

    Report this comment


    Tuesday, April 8, 2014


Show Job Lists


J&S Jewellery was launched three years ago by sisters Jenny and Sophie Laslett and is now turning over £1M a year. Photo : Steve Adams

When launching a jewellery business in late 2012, sisters Jenny and Sophie Laslett used some borrowed money and a spare room. After ordering a small batch from a manufacturer in the Far East, their only customers the first Christmas were friends and family.

Justice Secretary Liz Truss arrives in Downing Street, London, for the first Cabinet meeting of the new government. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday July 19, 2016. See PA story POLITICS Cabinet. Picture: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

It is always challenging to take on a job in an industry in which you have no experience, looking to learn on the job while leading.

Green 100


Enjoy the Green 100
digital edition


Mustard TV

Meet the Team

Mark Shields

Business Editor


Chris Hill

Agricultural and Farming Editor


Shaun Lowthorpe

Business Publishing Editor


Sabah Meddings

Business Writer


Duncan Abel

Business Development Manager

Business Most Read


Norfolk Future 50 EDP Business Awards Green 100

Business Most Commented

Newsletter Sign Up