British Chambers of Commerce calls for competence from the government

Business needs a competent government. Instead the Tory party is delivering “division and disorganisation”.

In a strongly worded statement, the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) has called on the government “to demonstrate competence and coherence – not division and disorganisation – in the interests of the UK’s economic well-being.” The stark warning comes on the second day of the Tory party conference in Manchester and it’s pretty damning. Cabinet splits continue to make headlines – mainly over the foreign secretary Boris Johnson. As the Financial Times reports, if the party conference was meant to showcase a united front from the Tories, it’s not working.

The leading business organisation said government division was not just undermining business confidence over Brexit but also on the “many issues where firms need to see clear action from government closer to home.” The BCC also reiterated its call for a “comprehensive transition period, lasting at least three years”.

Speaking in Manchester, BCC’s director general, Adam Marshall, said:

“Businesspeople across Britain are growing impatient with division and disorganisation at the heart of the party of government, and have made it very clear that they expect competence and coherence from ministers as we move into a critical period for the economy.”

“Public disagreements between Cabinet ministers in recent weeks have only served to undermine business confidence, not just on Brexit negotiations, but also on the many issues where firms need to see clear action from government closer to home. Action to cut the up-front cost of doing business, build key infrastructure, help firms plug increasing skills gaps, and to support investment and risk-taking must be front and centre on the government’s agenda.

“On Brexit, businesses are clear that they want a comprehensive transition period, lasting at least three years, and pragmatic discussions on the future trading relationship between the UK and the EU firmed up by the end of 2017. They will judge the government’s progress on Brexit by this yardstick – not by public speeches or pronouncements – and will take investment and hiring decisions accordingly.”

Image: © Twocoms /
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