Chancellor’s summer economic statement: National business reaction

July 8, 2020

The CBI said Chancellor Rishi Sunak was “absolutely right” to prioritise jobs in his summer statement this afternoon.

Director-general Dame Carolyn Fairbairn, pictured, said: “Flattening the daunting unemployment curve about to hit our country could not be more important. Joblessness scars lives and hits the young and most disadvantaged hardest. 

“Today’s jobs plan is an important step forward. For young people, the Kickstarter Scheme will help create jobs in the short-run that can turn into opportunities for the long-run, and firms look forward to working with government to get it up and running quickly and well. It is also good to see direct support for apprenticeships and careers advice, which will help build the skills as well as the jobs of the future.”

She said the new investment in green growth would spur job creation on the road to net zero, while revitalising demand through targeted VAT cuts for hospitality, an imaginative voucher scheme and stamp duty relief would be warmly welcomed by many businesses and help give consumers confidence to spend.

“But prevention is better than cure. Many viable firms are facing maximum jeopardy right now,” she added.

“The job retention bonus will help firms protect jobs. But with nearly 70% of firms running low on cash, and three in four reporting lack of demand, more immediate direct support for firms, from grants to further business rates relief, is still urgently needed.

“The Chancellor must continue to balance the need to invest in a long-term, sustainable recovery while responding to the urgent challenges that companies are experiencing today.”

More business reaction follows shortly . . .

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