The scale of challenges for Wales’ manufacturing heritage has been highlighted by a new GMB study, which reports that the region haemorrhaged almost 28,000 manufacturing jobs in the past decade.
The figures were discussed at GMB’s annual Congress in Plymouth between June 4 and 6.
They show that 27,900 jobs in the sector disappeared from 2006 to 2016, a massive fall of 15%. 
Between them the lost jobs have meant Wales has seen £980 million less paid in manufacturing wages in real-terms.
In 2006 Wales supported 183,200 permanent and temporary manufacturing jobs – almost 14% of the all jobs in the country.
By 2016, that had slumped to just 155,300 or 11% of the total.
The GMB have responded by demanding more Government investment in Welsh industries, and also called for them to avoid damaging tariffs on British goods to reverse what it describes as a dangerous decline.
John Phillips, GMB Welsh Secretary, said:
“Wales is haemorrhaging manufacturing jobs – and it’s massive problem for both our workers and the Welsh economy.
“We should cherish our manufacturing sector, but instead successive governments have driven it into the ground through a lack of investment and tendering processes that hamper our homegrown businesses.
“Manufacturing wages are 20% higher than the national average, and the sector is a keystone of the wider economy.
“These are jobs worth fighting for.
“If this sad decline is not addressed then the next generation of Welsh men and women will surely pay the price.”