The new boss of the CBI has told The Birmingham Post that he will carry on the fight for manufacturing.
Richard Lambert, who has taken over as director-general of the country's biggest business and industrial organisation from Sir Digby Jones, said he understands the problems that British manufacturers are facing from global competition and from soaring energy and raw material costs.
In an interview with the Post, he higlighted the importance of putting manufacturing's case to the Government.
He singled out how vital the car industry is to the British economy and the need to keep output at about the 1.5 million units a year that the industry is currently achieving.
Mr Lambert said it was important, for example, to ensure that Micra production remains at Nissan's Washington, Tyne & Wear, plant instead of being transferred to Spain "where the government is pulling rabbits out of the hat" to try to win the business.
"I think the car industry is in good shape and has done brilliantly in difficult times. We need to strain every sinew to ensure that Nissan remains strong," he added.
Mr Lambert, aged 61, has taken over at the CBI after a spell as a member of the Bank of England's rate-setting monetary policy committee.
Before that he was a financial journalist and rose to become Editor of the Financial Times, where he managed a staff of nearly 500 people.
He was the first non-economist to sit on the MPC and as such he met hundreds of businessmen and women in all regions of Britain.
"Being director-general of the CBI is the best job in the world," he said.
"I really enjoy talking to companies and I am really interested in the way business works, which is why I became a business journalist."
In his first speech as director-general, Mr Lambert will tonight tell MPs at a meeting at the House of Commons: "There is reason to be hugely optimistic about the future of the UK business sector and the wider wealth-creation lrole it plays in society. We have the attitudes and innovation to win in an increasingly competitive world economy."
But if Britain is to compete with the likes of China, India and Brazil the Government needs to put in a place "a clear and practical" energy policy as well as deregulate and free up business from unnecessary red tape.