29 September 2014
CBI comments on the Chancellor's Conference speech
The CBI today commented on the speech by the Chancellor, George Osborne, to the Conservative Party conference.
John Cridland, CBI Director-General, said:
"The economic recovery is strengthening, but it's certainly not job done, so businesses will be buoyed to hear the Chancellor commit to an economic plan for the long-term. Investment in infrastructure, like runways, and in skills are the right choices to boost growth across the country.
On the deficit, Mr Cridland said:
"The Chancellor should be credited for sticking to his guns on deficit reduction but we shouldn't underestimate how far we have to go. Further deficit reduction must include welfare reform, as the Chancellor said.
On tackling youth unemployment:
"We know that being out of work can scar young people for the rest of their lives, so we must do far more to help them into work.
"Young people must have different options open to them and business stands ready to do more through training and apprenticeships.
“Setting low and fair business taxes is the right goal for the UK. The CBI supports transparency on tax and will work with the Government to ensure that tax rules are fair on both sides. Companies will always want to operate within the rules.
On changes to inherited pensions funds:
"This is a welcome change which will encourage people to save more, and with greater flexibility, for their retirement.
“There is a real issue in the UK with people not saving enough for retirement, especially as we are now enjoying longer lives. The Government should also commit to keeping the higher rate of tax relief on pensions, as we try to rebuild our savings culture.
"Getting Britain building is critical to our future. The Chancellor's announcement to build 100,000 more homes for first time buyers and to extend Help to Buy is a good start, but we need to be building at least 240,000 homes a year to meet demand.
"This action needs to go hand-in-hand with further long-term measures that boost supply and help for all those who want to get on the housing ladder, like getting going on with new garden cities and streamlining the planning system."