Businesses in region say more to be done following budget - The Leamington Observer

Businesses in region say more to be done following budget

Ian Hughes 22nd Nov, 2017   0

COMPANIES in Coventry and Warwickshire had some of their wishes granted by Chancellor Philip Hammond in his Autumn Budget – but business leaders say there is much more to be done to gear the economy for the future.

The Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce held a Budget Panel event at the headquarters of property firm Deeley Group and, after the Chancellor delivered his statement, firms gave their views on his raft of announcements.

Louise Bennett, chief executive of the Chamber, said: “The companies in the room felt it was a well presented, well delivered Budget by the Chancellor – who has been under a bit of pressure over recent months.

“We welcome a prioritising of productivity through investment but this, is of course, set against a picture of downward forecasts in GDP over the next few years.




“Here in Coventry and Warwickshire, we are always very pleased to see investment in technology-led and knowledge-led businesses. This region is at the cutting edge of the digital and tech-led economy and this will enhance our opportunity to grow that area.

“We are very pleased to see that the West Midlands will receive a new devo deal and this will present further opportunities for growth in our patch – so we are delighted for Andy Street and the region in securing that and we look forward to seeing the full detail of the deal.


“On business rates, the Chancellor has listened and reduced the burden but we still feel there is much more to be done.

“As we said in the build up to the Budget, there is often an obsession with reducing corporation tax but actually businesses have to have made those profits in the first place for them to be taxed on. The real challenge is getting the up-front costs of doing business down, to give firms an even greater opportunity to grow.

“In terms of skills, there were positives around investment in maths and computer science but the real challenge will be delivering this at speed because finding teachers will be a real issue.

“We also felt there has been a missed opportunity around making the apprenticeship programme even more business friendly as an announcement was due on that this week and has since been deferred.

“The Chancellor talked about infrastructure and housing – which our property clients welcomed – but there was very little on unlocking employment land which is needed to provide the jobs for the future when all of the new homes are built.

“So, on the whole, there was enough in there for businesses across our patch to welcome but, with Brexit looming and no real detail on it emerging, firms will want to see even more work done to help invest in our future outside of the EU – whatever shape that takes.”– but business leaders say there is much more to be done to gear the economy for the future.

The Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce held a Budget Panel event at the headquarters of property firm Deeley Group and, after the Chancellor delivered his statement, firms gave their views on his raft of announcements.

Louise Bennett, chief executive of the Chamber, said: “The companies in the room felt it was a well presented, well delivered Budget by the Chancellor – who has been under a bit of pressure over recent months.

“We welcome a prioritising of productivity through investment but this, is of course, set against a picture of downward forecasts in GDP over the next few years.

“Here in Coventry and Warwickshire, we are always very pleased to see investment in technology-led and knowledge-led businesses. This region is at the cutting edge of the digital and tech-led economy and this will enhance our opportunity to grow that area.

“We are very pleased to see that the West Midlands will receive a new devo deal and this will present further opportunities for growth in our patch – so we are delighted for Andy Street and the region in securing that and we look forward to seeing the full detail of the deal.

“On business rates, the Chancellor has listened and reduced the burden but we still feel there is much more to be done.

“As we said in the build up to the Budget, there is often an obsession with reducing corporation tax but actually businesses have to have made those profits in the first place for them to be taxed on. The real challenge is getting the up-front costs of doing business down, to give firms an even greater opportunity to grow.

“In terms of skills, there were positives around investment in maths and computer science but the real challenge will be delivering this at speed because finding teachers will be a real issue.

“We also felt there has been a missed opportunity around making the apprenticeship programme even more business friendly as an announcement was due on that this week and has since been deferred.

“The Chancellor talked about infrastructure and housing – which our property clients welcomed – but there was very little on unlocking employment land which is needed to provide the jobs for the future when all of the new homes are built.

“So, on the whole, there was enough in there for businesses across our patch to welcome but, with Brexit looming and no real detail on it emerging, firms will want to see even more work done to help invest in our future outside of the EU – whatever shape that takes.”

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