Editorial comment: The K Show looms
The global plastic industry is about to descend on Düsseldorf for the triennial K Show.
As an opportunity to highlight the latest products and services, the K Show is peerless, attracting companies and visitors on a scale unlike anywhere else in the world.
One of the 2016 show’s key themes is Industry 4.0, as our K Show feature section recently illustrated. Many firms exhibiting at K will be showcasing this ‘Internet of Things’. One aim will be to convince doubters that it can be transformative for businesses.
Proponents argue it can be transformational for any size of business, yet owners of small firms can be daunted by what it involves. Fear not, the experts say.
This year’s K show could be a springboard for Industry 4.0’s development across the plastics sector, and if you are in Düsseldorf in the coming days, keep your eyes peeled.
The government’s hard line on Brexit has shaken confidence in the pound, sending it dangerously close to parity with the euro.
As one leading UK plastics industry executive said recently, input costs are likely to rise and this, combined with a weakened domestic currency, will take its toll on plastics processors.
Exporters may be heartened, but the price to be paid by those importing raw materials into the UK is likely to be high, in more ways than one.
I found Amber Rudd’s suggestion, now dropped, that UK companies publish the number of foreign workers in their employ frankly abhorrent.
Dressed as a means to persuade companies to hire ‘local’ workers, it instead came across as something reminiscent from 1930’s Germany.
If the government wants more ‘local’ people to find work, it should plough more resources into UK education and skills development, instead of demonising ‘foreigners’.