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Put that cash to work and invest in firms.


British manufacturers are beginning to win back work that has for
the last ten years been sourced in China.

The reason is that

 costs have risen, transport charges
have escalated, and the pound sterling has fallen. This, coupled with
question marks about consistency of quality, has created opportunities.

This is great news for Midland manufacturers. We’ve had lean
times for some years and many good firms have fallen by the wayside.

However, expanding order books require additional funds to finance
the more work.

Despite Government claims, money from lenders is just not getting
through. Some firms are finding great difficulties with cash flow,
especially as many customers are taking longer to pay.

It’s a ridiculous situation for manufacturers.

Orders are being won, there is plenty of plant available to handle
the business, yet lack of cash is preventing this work being processed,
and of course, precluding recruitment.

This current situation could be an ideal time for business angels,
and those with spare cash in the bank, to come forward.

The manner in which the
 see European Economic Community.
 dealt with
 , Gr. Kypros, Turk. Kıbrıs, officially Republic of Cyprus, republic (2005 est. pop. 780,000), 3,578 sq mi (9,267 sq km), an island in the E Mediterranean Sea, c.40 mi (60 km) S of Turkey and c.
, and the fact that
they let it be known that the same

 would be used for other
members with similar problems, should be a wake-up call to people with
cash over PS85,000 in any given bank.

Our Government has said that it would be very unlikely for it to
take similar action with our debt mountain, but no politician will rule
it out altogether.

Money lying in the bank is losing value as inflation outstrips the

 also mea·gre  
1. Deficient in quantity, fullness, or extent; scanty.

2. Deficient in richness, fertility, or vigor; feeble:

 returns achieved.

It would make sense to invest spare capital in projects that would
currently give a return of anything from four to five per cent, or more,
long term if an equity stake was acquired.

The lesson to be learned from the Cyprus fiasco is that a precedent
has been set, and without doubt, other Governments will follow if driven
into a tight corner.

To have heaps of cash just lying in a bank is no longer a good
idea. Depositors have to remember that it is not just depositing for
safe-keeping, it has to be regarded as an investment, and as such, there
is risk attached as so many, now poorer, Cypriots and Russians have

Russell Luckock is chairman of Birmingham pressings firm AE Harris