Manufacturers still hot about prospects for 2013: SME

Almost 75% intend to invest in equipment this year, budgets from $50,000 to $5 million.

TORONTO — Another survey of Canadian manufacturers is showing companies are expecting business to increase this year, despite some uncertainty in the economy, according to a Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) survey.

Two-thirds of the 431 respondents said they are optimistic about business growth over the next 12 to18 months, with most expecting a moderate to significant rise.

There are some challenges ahead, though: 41% identify a shortage of skilled workers; 38% rising production costs; and 32% the need to invest in new equipment and technology.

• 74% expect to purchase equipment in the coming year, with budgets ranging from less than $50,000 to more than $5 million.

• Almost 25% identify a high Canadian dollar as a concern.

• More than 30% cited improving workforce productivity as a significant business challenge.

• 84% of purchasing budgets will be either the same or greater this year compared to 2012.

Respondents came from the automotive, energy, aerospace, fabricated metal and machinery sectors.

SME is producing the Canadian Manufacturing Technology Show (CMTS) 2013 in Mississauga, Ont. Sept. 30 to Oct. 3.

Click here for CMTS details.