Belfast Telegraph

PM blinkered for bowing to banks

How times have changed. Not so many years ago the UK's economy was driven by a blistering hot manufacturing sector, one which was the envy of the world. In Northern Ireland you could take your pick of products which proudly placed us as one of the most industrious nations.

But that's all changed now with manufacturing falling back into what some people consider a niche industry while the likes of financial services are providing the power to drive the economy.

No wonder then that David Cameron was willing to sacrifice good relations with Europe in order to protect a sector of the economy which was responsible for such a large contribution to the economy.

But was the Prime Minister believing the bluster and ignoring the metal?

According to a new book by Manchester University and the Open University's Centre for Research on Socio-Cultural Change (CRESC), it seems he might be a little blinkered.

For instance, during the boom times of 2002 to 2008 the UK financial services sector contributed £190 billion in taxes to the government. That's good but nothing compared to the £380bn which the manufacturing sector contributed.

So it seems DC might have been over-egging the pudding slightly when he tried to suggest he was saving the bedrock of the economy.

Rather than bowing to the bankers he should maybe try mollycoddling the makers.

And that's before we get on to the reason he gave for his bold move - financial regulation - something we will leave for another day.

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