For over three years, business has had to deal with crippling levels of uncertainty. This has led to investment falling, with plans either being put on ice or moved elsewhere.
Using member input, insight and expertise, the CBI has called on the next government to unlock competitiveness and work with business on the generation-defining challenges that will define the UK’s prosperity for years to come.
Read the CBI’s vision for new government
Whatever the hue of the next government, they must tackle the big challenges of today that will define the UK’s success for the next decade: reducing regional inequality across our country, giving every young person the skills they need to succeed, and to tackling the climate emergency.
Coinciding with the CBI’s flagship Annual Conference, we’ve published businesses’ manifesto for the next government.
The CBI’s Programme for Prosperity sets out the four steps that will drive the change we need to see.
Long-term solutions to long-term problems
The next government has the chance of a lifetime to work in partnership with business to come up with bolder, better and fairer answers for the economy.
By addressing day-to-day concerns that have long been neglected – whether its reforming business rates to breathe new life into our high streets, fixing the broken Apprenticeship Levy or getting on with vital infrastructure projects like HS2 and a third runway at Heathrow – we can address the challenges that are holding our economy back.
Crucially, we need to finally realise the true potential of the UK’s regions by recommitting to the Industrial Strategy and ensuring 60% of England is covered by a devolution deal by 2025. This will address systemic regional inequalities and power our economy forward.
Unlock the UK’s competitive advantage
But these solutions will only work if business is thriving.
The next government must show the world that UK policy is constant, reliable and driven by evidence of what works. It’s what the world has admired about us in times gone by. We’ve seen plenty of promises on the campaign trail already.
But it is about what works. It’s about what helps create jobs and raises living standards – from an open and controlled immigration system, to providing a clear route for firms to feed into the government’s trade strategy post-Brexit.
Back business as a force for good
Through these actions, politicians can back-up their campaign promises and prove they back business – ensuring every part of the country benefits from enterprise, jobs and growth.
Firms are showing, more than ever, that profit comes with purpose. Business is here to provide great jobs, invest in communities and meet the expectations that society rightly has of them. This is already true of hundreds of thousands of firms across the country. Now it must be true of every firm.
Secure a Brexit deal that protects the economy
The ongoing Brexit uncertainty remains a challenging backdrop to all domestic priorities and the CBI is clear that a no deal scenario will be seriously damaging. But Brexit must not obscure the country’s long-term vision. Time is long overdue for a renewed focus on bold, sustainable steps to drive up economic growth and share the benefits across the UK, including Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
As the election campaign enters its final few weeks, the CBI will continue to promote business priorities in all our public interventions and private engagements. That is only possible through member contributions. We need businesses to share their challenges, concerns, and opportunities during this critical period for UK businesses.
By working together and showing the world that the UK is a truly pro-enterprise, open and inclusive economy, we can deliver for business and communities across the country.