Chris McDonald, CEO of the Materials Processing Institute, has been elected to a significant position that will play a crucial role in the future of the UK’s metals sector.
Mr McDonald has been named Chair of the UK Metals Council (UKMC). He will formally take over the position in March 2019, after being voted in as Chair at the latest UKMC Board Meeting, in November.
The UK Metals Council works across Whitehall to inform and influence Ministers, Government, Departments and their agencies about the value and needs of the UK metals sector. The Council is made up of senior figures from the metals industry representing the full spectrum of the supply chain, from primary manufacturing to recycling.
It hopes that by 2030 a modern and progressive UK metals industry will be delivering high-quality, innovative and competitively priced products as principal supplier to the UK’s main manufacturers and infrastructure projects, as well as a leading global exporter.
Chris currently serves as the UKMC’s Innovation Lead and this latest appointment builds on his additional roles within industry, including Policy Chair for Innovation & Enterprise at the Federation of Small Businesses and a Board member of UK Steel.
He has overseen the growth of the Materials Processing Institute to become a world-leading research and innovation centre for the global steel industry, from its North East England campus.
The Institute supports organisations that work in advanced materials, low carbon energy and the circular economy, which includes the upscaling and commercialisation of innovation.
Chris McDonald said: “The UKMC is a respected industry body that has ambitious plans for the future of the sector, and I am delighted to have been elected by my peers to this position. There is plenty of work that can be done to give the metals sector a voice within government, which should be viewed as a priority to Westminster.
“Organisations involved in and that have an interest within the sector need as much support as possible. These are the businesses driving forward innovation and productivity gains, while also supporting skilled jobs that this country requires. I am excited by the challenges ahead and I hope to draw upon my experiences and industry knowledge to serve the UKMC and the wider sector well.”
Simon MacVicker, outgoing Chair, UK Metals Council, said: “Chris has led our innovation work during the formative years of Metals Council, during which time we have gained greatly from his understanding of innovation and how it can be applied in industry, the productivity challenge, and his special understanding of how small businesses work. I am very excited that Chris has agreed to be elected as the next Chair of Metals Council, we will be in excellent hands.
Pam Murrell CEO of the Cast Metals Federation and Chair of the Metals Forum, added: “Metals are fundamental to the other industry sectors and are integral to the Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain at a time of significant change to many of these sectors. Metals also have an important part to play in the circular economy and the clean growth strategy, along with other materials. As Trade Associations working together through the UK Metals Forum, we are keen to continue to support the work of the Metals Council, and provide a conduit to the many SMEs that make up the sector. Chris’ knowledge of the sector combined with his understanding of the particular challenges facing smaller businesses will be a huge asset to us.”