The IPIA visits No 10 to protect print

April 28, 2023

As parts of its sustained efforts to grow the UK print industry, the Independent Print Industries Association (IPIA) paid a visit to No 10 Downing Street – where its Chair, Charles Rogers, met with special advisors to the Prime Minister Rishi Sunak.

The IPIA is now gathering representations from leading associations belonging to the Graphic and Print Media Alliance (GPMA), which includes the BPIF and PICON. It will work in partnership with them to further strengthen these advocacy efforts.

On the agenda for discussion with the special business and political advisors was a detailed overview of the place of the UK as top-6 global print producer, its responsibility for nearly 8% of total UK manufacturing output, and the critical part it plays in the social, cultural and economic fabric of the country. Print and paper’s role in developing sustainable technology and its contribution to the advancement of the circular economy was also highlighted.

The IPIA also set out the challenges that are inhibiting the growth and competitiveness of UK print and paper, before presenting a package of structural and strategic support requests. A case was also put forward for the print, paper and allied sectors to be recognised as an ‘industry of strategic value’ – a term that describes industries that play a fundamental role in the economic health and competitiveness of the nation.

“The opportunity to participate in this meeting presented itself at short notice, and I was honoured to represent the IPIA on behalf of print and paper at No 10 Downing Street,” says Charles, who continues: “Meeting with special advisors, who report to the PM, was a critical and rare opportunity to push our agenda for all those involved with print and paper in the UK.”

Working in partnership

The special advisors welcomed the information and valued the dialogue, which gave them a chance not only to learn key facts about one of the UK’s few remaining world-class manufacturing industries, but how it can be supported to grow with Government assistance.

The meeting was facilitated by Puneet Gupta from PG Paper Company Ltd, as part of its ongoing initiatives to support the paper and print industry in the UK, who comments: “In today’s fast-paced digital world, the paper and print industry faces a range of challenges that require innovation, collaboration, and adaptability to overcome – it’s important to have open and honest conversations about navigating these. By bringing together stakeholders from various sectors of the industry we look to develop strategies to overcome the challenges and support growth.”

Further to Puneet’s comments, Charles adds: “The meeting represents the culmination of years of hard work spent talking to Government, creating and attending industry events, networking and beating the drum for print and paper by the IPIA.”

Charles concludes: “Both advisors expressed positivity regarding follow up meetings and currently we are looking forward to a return visit – where we can expand on suggestions to aid UK print and paper supported by the GPMA.”

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