8 May 2000
Industries demand weaker Sterling
by FWi staff
THE National Farmers Union says it has teamed up with representatives from other industries in a bid to persuade the government to lower the exchange rate.
Sterlings strength has been blamed for the slump in farm incomes which has sucked in imports and made British farm produce uncompetitive abroad.
Other industries, especially the manufacturing and tourist sector, have also blamed the strong Pound for the decline in their fortunes over recent months.
The Euro has lost about 20% of its value since it was launched in January last year. It now stands at approximately 59p against the Pound.
Ben Gill, NFU president, has now helped formulate an economic strategy with six manufacturing groups in an attempt to reduce the exchange rate.
“It is vital that steps are taken to introduce economic and fiscal policies which tackle this extremely damaging long term valuation,” he said.
Mr Gill refused to reveal the names of the other groups. But the strategy would be presented to the government next month, he said.
The NFU leader was speaking before 50 NFU representatives from across the country met with their MPs prior to a House of Commons debate on farming.
The debate, which will take place on Thursday (11 May), will focus on the governments attitude towards farming and the Common Agricultural Policy.