UK manufacturers reported declines in both total and exports orders in March and their expectations for production fell the most since the financial crisis in 2009, survey results from the Confederation of British Industry showed Tuesday.
The order books balance fell to -29 percent from -18 percent in February. Likewise, the export order books balance declined to -28 percent from -17 percent.
A balance of -20 percent expect output volumes to contract at a faster pace in the next three months, the weakest expectations since the financial crisis in 2009.
“The manufacturing sector is facing unprecedented challenges due to COVID-19, such as widespread disruption to supply chains and weakening demand due to domestic containment measures,” Anna Leach, CBI deputy chief economist, said.
With expectations for output set to fall in the coming months, it’s now more important than ever manufacturers get the support they need, she said.