Manufacturing trade body EEF warns Britain risks falling behind on internet capability

Chris Papadopoullos
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Two thirds of businesses said current connectivity was not adequate for future needs (Source: Getty)

Britain's digital infrastructure will hold the country back during the fourth industrial revolution, a manufacturing trade body has warned today.

Internet access is as essential as electricity and water, according to 91 per cent of companies surveyed.

The survey from EEF also found that connection costs had gone up for half of manufacturers in the last two years, while two thirds said connectivity was not adequate for future needs.

“Most of the focus has been on future household internet access despite the economic returns from better internet connectivity being higher if businesses are prioritised,” said EEF chief economist Lee Hopley.

“The Government should urgently reverse this trend and come forward with concrete steps to ensure the UK has a modern business environment that enables us to outperform in the digital race.”

EEF wants the new National Infrastructure Commission to take a leading role in solving the problem.

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