Commenting on the news that the UK and the EU have today (Thursday) reached agreement on a Brexit deal, Steve Turner, Unite's assistant general secretary for manufacturing said:

"The overwhelming feeling for the country's millions of manufacturing workers will be one of immense relief.  The months of needless uncertainty caused by the government's reckless negotiating positions have forced thousands into unemployment, choked off investment and put a brake on job creation and innovation at the very time when our economy desperately needs to rebuild.

"Relieved as we are and thin as the deal may be, we consider the deal to be the floor and certainly not the ceiling of our future trading relationship.  

"We will continue to campaign with our members and work alongside industry to press government and Labour to build on it, particularly in the area of component supply as the sector is simply not in a position to insource and build in the UK overnight. The details around rules of origin and cumulation will be of concern to our auto sector in particular and we will look to discuss these with government as a matter of urgency.

"The government must not be allowed to put its feet up and claim job done. Far from it. The new year will bring a need to roll up our sleeves in the national interest and build the broadest possible alliance to safeguard and advance the long-term interests of our manufacturing heartlands.  

"A strong, confident future for UK manufacturing sector levels up the economy, providing secure, well paid, skilled jobs, and its high value exports help fund our public services. We are a proud, innovative, manufacturing nation and we want to stay that way. Unite will certainly continue to lead the fight for every job, apprenticeship, investment and opportunity as we lead the world in the race to green and clean our towns, cities and skies."  

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