CBI responds to latest GDP data

Alpesh Paleja, CBI Lead Economist, said:

“Implementing Plan B in December was the right thing to do, but with Covid clearly here to stay, the Government must now act to prevent the need for further restrictions on activity. This includes providing clearer forward guidance to support business adaptation, prioritising mass-testing over mass self-isolation, and ensuring that travel controls are proportionate so that the UK remains open to the rest of the world.”

14 Jan 2022

CBI Wales responds to First Minister's Covid statement

Ian Price, CBI Wales Director, said:

“The reduction in Covid restrictions will be welcomed by businesses across Wales which have endured enormous economic hardship throughout the pandemic. A roadmap to a more open economy will reinvigorate activity in our towns and cities, while bringing much-needed relief to beleaguered sectors like hospitality and entertainment."

14 Jan 2022

CBI comments on reduction in self-isolation days for England

Matthew Fell, CBI UK Chief policy director:

“Firms are under the cosh dealing with mounting staff absences from self-isolation, so this move should have an almost immediate benefit. Businesses have been urging a reduction in the self-isolation period, providing health experts confirm it is safe, as a pragmatic change that will help keep the economy open as we adapt to live with the virus.”

13 Jan 2022

CBI Scotland response to First Minister's Covid statement

Tracy Black, CBI Scotland Director, said:

“Beginning to lift restrictions from next week is a welcome step, with ongoing measures continuing to have a cooling effect on Scotland’s economy. Progress must now be made quickly to remove remaining restrictions, including the legal requirement to work from home, which is doubtless harming city centres, especially hospitality."

11 Jan 2022

Change the Race Ratio campaign reaches 100 signatories

Lord Karan Bilimoria CBE DL, CBI President, said:

"We can and must vastly improve racial and ethnic diversity in business. Not only is it a vital step towards giving more people the chance to succeed and making society more inclusive; the business case is also crystal clear. Diverse companies perform better on every metric."

11 Jan 2022

CBI comments on future Covid testing availability

Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist, said:

“Free lateral flow tests are a vital weapon in the UK’s Covid defences – they are central to keeping the economy open and allowing the UK to live with confidently the virus. Proposals to remove them now make no economic sense.”

09 Jan 2022

Our reaction to latest Covid announcements in England

Matthew Fell, CBI Chief Policy Director, said:

"Despite welcome pragmatism, ‘Plan B’ measures have hit consumer confidence and dented demand. Recent financial support has given some businesses breathing space, but the Government must closely monitor the impact on all affected sectors and stand ready with further help if needed."

05 Jan 2022

CBI comments on latest Covid announcements in Scotland

Matthew Fell, CBI Chief Policy Director, said:

“Mass lateral flow testing will continue to be a vital tool in the months ahead as we learn to live with the virus and its variants, so it’s vital that the UK Government both tackles the current supply challenges and extends its commitment to keeping testing free beyond March 2022.”

05 Jan 2022

CBI Northern Ireland responds to new restrictions

CBI Northern Ireland spokesperson:

“Once again the economy’s hardest-hit sectors are being asked to carry the can for protecting public health, yet are not being adequately compensated for restrictions that will clearly put operations and livelihoods at risk. With infections spreading rapidly, the Government is right to advise that those who can, WFH. But that should be reversed as soon as it is safe to do so."

23 Dec 2021

CBI Scotland responds to latest round of Covid restrictions

CBI Scotland spokesperson said:

“While the announcement of further business support is welcome, it represents a drop in the ocean when compared with usual takings at this all-important time of year. What support is available must get out to those who need it most as soon as possible – particularly with so little time before devastating restrictions come into force."

21 Dec 2021

CBI responds to latest round of government business support

Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist, said:

“The latest targeted package offers a fair variety of support to help keep businesses open, with new central grants, flexibility on time to pay and sick pay support for SMEs. All this and more will help keep the economy open as we learn to live with the virus."

21 Dec 2021

CBI Wales responds to Welsh Budget announcement for 2022/23

Ian Price, CBI Wales Director, said:

“As we build our way out of the pandemic, the Welsh Government is right to prioritise green growth. High growth sectors, such as renewable energy, advanced manufacturing, and compound semiconductors, should be able to access the range of skills needed to achieve their net zero ambitions."

20 Dec 2021

Scotland lagging behind but data-driven productivity push can level the playing-field

Tracy Black, CBI Scotland Director, said:

“While the latest index data shows we are making improvements in some areas, the fact we continue to lag behind domestic and international competitors overall shows the need for rapid remedial action. Scotland does a great job in terms of setting ambitious long term economic goals, but businesses desperately want to see swift progress in moving from high level discussion to impactful delivery. Ambition must translate into action now or we risk the gap widening.”

20 Dec 2021

CBI comments on EU proposals for medicines into Northern Ireland

Sean McGuire, CBI Europe Director, said:

“The CBI and wider industry have been calling for greater certainty on the movement of medicines between GB and NI – today’s announcement from the EU looks like a welcome step in that direction. Industry will now examine the detail on this complex and sensitive issue. Businesses urge both sides to work together and agree lasting, durable solutions to unlock the remaining issues with the Protocol.”

17 Dec 2021

Government must act to restore confidence

Introducing the new proposals on how government and business must learn to live with the virus and its variants, Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist, said:

“Cash is king, so helping affected firms with cashflow, by ensuring unspent local authority grants are distributed to firms, giving firms more headroom to manage their coronavirus debt repayments and considering measures to reduce the fixed costs of businesses where demand is severely affected should be on the table. Meanwhile creating feedback loops for business, government and unions as the Omicron wave continues will be vital for assessing the impact of restrictions and the need for future support."

15 Dec 2021

CBI responds to the UK government's new national cyber strategy

Susannah Odell, CBI Head of Digital policy, said:

“Cyber threats are constantly evolving so it’s pivotal the UK is able to respond at pace to these attacks. The investment in skills, increasing international collaboration and the newly - announced joint industry and government advisory board will build in cyber resilience, helping to make the UK the safest place to live and work online. As a growing sector it’s positive to see the strategy highlight cyber as competitive advantage, to capitalise on this getting firms to scale and export globally will be crucial in building a future-fit economy.”

15 Dec 2021

CBI responds to the latest UK labour market statistics

Matthew Percival, CBI Director of Employment, said:

“Job creation remained strong this autumn, but continuing difficulty hiring, the emergence of omicron variant and new restrictions will mean a challenging winter for businesses. The government is taking necessary action now to protect the public, but the economy should remain as open as is feasibly safe to do so in the coming weeks. More effort must go into promoting actions that can build confidence and protect public health, like daily contact testing and mask wearing."

14 Dec 2021

Beware unintended consequences of restrictions to the economy

On what needs to happen in the coming weeks, Tony said:

“The economy should remain as open as is feasibly safe to do so in the coming weeks. The bar should be high when it comes to any new restrictions on economic activity beyond Plan B. More effort must go into promoting actions that can build confidence and protect public health, like daily contact testing and mask wearing."

13 Dec 2021

CBI responds to latest monthly GDP figures

Alpesh Paleja, CBI Lead Economist, said:

“It’s clear that a booster for growth – particularly investment - is needed, to protect and build on our recovery. Government can back business by pursuing pro-investment and pro-innovation regulation to help build new markets and a competitive tax regime; incentivising business investment. Getting this mix right will pay dividends over the longer term.”

10 Dec 2021

CBI Scotland responds to Scottish Budget announcement

Tracy Black, CBI Scotland Director, said:

“Overall, business shares the Scottish Government’s vision for a fairer, greener and more prosperous economy. Firms will be keen to see how the forthcoming National Economic Transformation Strategy turns ambition into action; setting Scotland on a path towards competitiveness, dynamism and productivity growth – which is the only sustainable route to higher living standards.”

09 Dec 2021

CBI response to introduction of new Covid restrictions

Matthew Fell, CBI Chief Policy Director, said:

“Omicron will quite likely not be the last variant. We need to create consistency in our approach and build confidence by reducing the oscillation between normal life and restrictions. Prioritising daily testing, rather than self-isolation, is a good step. Firms need continued forward guidance and a commitment from government to prioritise ongoing free, mass rapid testing as we learn to live with the virus."

08 Dec 2021

CBI responds to Climate Change Committee report on COP26

Matthew Fell, CBI Chief Policy Director, said that transforming the UK economy and reorienting it towards sustainable green growth requires active collaboration between business and government. He added:

“But the UK can’t solve the climate and nature crises alone. These are era-defining global challenges and the UK must use its continued role as COP26 president to lead ambitious efforts around green finance, increased adaption and developing effective carbon markets.”

02 Dec 2021

CBI responds to introduction of new COVID restrictions

Matthew Fell, CBI Chief Policy Director, said:

“The government is right to act swiftly, but proportionately, with the goal of keeping the economy open. Widening access to boosters will hopefully increase the UK’s resilience, building on the roll out of our world-leading vaccine programme. Clarity on the implementation and enforcement of new measures, like mask wearing will be vital so that the public and businesses can approach the run up to Christmas with confidence and certainty."

29 Nov 2021

CBI responds to Union Connectivity Review

Matthew Fell, CBI Chief Policy Director, said:

“The landmark Union Connectivity Review has made some important recommendations which will help deliver a modern, integrated transport network. The creation of UKNET, offering strategic oversight to the whole transport network, along with multi-modal corridors and efforts to turn the UK into a sustainable aviation fuel powerhouse, will be particularly welcomed by business."

26 Nov 2021

CBI Scotland responds to Scottish Government decision not to extend Covid certification

Tracy Black, CBI Scotland Director, said:

“Today’s decision strikes the right balance between managing the virus and protecting our economic recovery. But we cannot afford to lose sight of the fact that COVID-19 remains a threat. That means redoubling our efforts on mass rapid testing, maximising world-leading vaccine uptake, and continuing to deliver Covid-secure workplaces to keep staff and customers safe, and the economy open.”

23 Nov 2021

CBI President responds to Labour Leader's speech at CBI annual conference in Birmingham

Lord Bilimoria, CBI President CBE, DL, said the Leader of the Opposition’s commitments to sound public finances, the green economy and making Brexit work for business will be heard by firms up and down the country.

“As Labour advances its new - more consultative - ‘contract with business’, the CBI will play its part. In providing Sir Keir and his team with expert business insight, we can help Labour’s economic policies stay on the path of enabling growth rather than hampering it."

22 Nov 2021

CBI responds to Prime Minister's speech at Annual Conference

Tony Danker, CBI Director-General, said:

“What the Prime Minister set out today on EV charging is exactly the kind of detail we need to drive the necessary investment for a high-growth economy. That mix of high of ambition and focused detail can provide a blueprint for how government and business can work together to turn political aspiration into boardroom action."

22 Nov 2021

UK has a 'shot at redemption' to level up in every region - CBI Annual Conference

Tony Danker, CBI Director General, said the UK has a shot at redemption, with a chance to regenerate with nascent industries – such as biotech, space, and cybersecurity – emerging in all parts of the country. He added:

"Even more so with net zero, which creates a once in a generation opportunity for the UK’s industrial heartlands to lead in this new industrial revolution, as they did in the last. Hydrogen. Off-shore wind. Carbon Capture. Electric Vehicles and batteries. And other net-zero solutions."

22 Nov 2021

CBI responds to Integrated Rail Plan announcement

Matthew Fell, CBI Chief Policy Director, said that the Integrated Rail Plan is a significant investment that will go some way towards modernising our ageing rail networks and can be delivered at pace. He added:

“But businesses across the Midlands and Northern England will be justifiably disappointed to see the goalposts have moved at the eleventh hour, and concerned that some of the areas most sorely in need of development will lose out as a result of the scaled back plans.”

18 Nov 2021

CBI and Turner & Townsend: Establishing major projects industry can drive net-zero and levelling up

Matthew Fell, CBI Chief Policy Director, said that if levelling up and net zero are to become a reality, successfully delivering major projects right across the country must become the norm rather than the exception.

"Post-COP26, the need for action on carbon emissions in major projects could not be clearer. Ultimately, this report represents the business contribution to improving major project delivery. Getting this right can improve value for money for taxpayers and meaningfully contribute to government commitments on achieving net zero and levelling up communities."

17 Nov 2021

Our response to latest ONS Labour Market statistics

Matthew Percival, CBI Director of People & Skills, noted that the UK’s jobs outlook remained strong over the summer with employment figures rising and unemployment falling. He added:

“However, ongoing supply chain issues, labour shortages and record high vacancies have put a brake on growth. The Supply Chain Advisory Group is a positive development, demonstrating the Government’s willingness to work in partnership with business to tackle current challenges. Companies will continue to face these issues well into the New Year, so it’s important this spirit of collaboration is maintained to safeguard the UK’s economic recovery.”

16 Nov 2021

Our response to Glasgow Climate Pact - COP26 outcome

Tony Danker, CBI Director-General, said while the summit has advanced global efforts to tackle the climate and nature crisis, negotiators, activists and businesses will have to keep working beyond Glasgow to keep the 1.5 degree target alive.

“Where COP26 has been truly pioneering is in terms of the contribution of business. Over the past few weeks, businesses have shown that they are committed to moving from laggard to leader on climate and to bring fresh impetus, innovation and ingenuity to delivering net zero. Regardless of the political outcome of COP26, business stands ready to go further and faster to play its part.”

13 Nov 2021

CBI responds to Google v Lloyd case

Matthew Fell, CBI Chief Policy Director, welcomed the decision.

“Data is at the heart of modern business operations in sectors from logistics to financial services, and firms know how they treat customers’ data has a real impact on trust in technology. Introducing a US-style class action could have put a chill on investment and a detrimental impact on firms across the economy without improving access to justice for the majority of consumers.”

10 Nov 2021

CBI responds to MPC decision on interest rates

Alpesh Paleja, CBI Lead Economist, said on balance the decision to keep interest rates unchanged is the right one.

“The next few months will be something of a balancing act for the MPC. They will need to navigate monetary policy to both curb any signs of price pressures becoming more entrenched, and support the economic recovery from the pandemic. It’s important to remember that any future changes to interest rates will still leave monetary policy very accommodative, with ample scope to support economic growth going forward.”

04 Nov 2021

Our response to the Glasgow financial alliance for net zero announcement - COP26

Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist, said:

"The establishment of the Sustainability Standards Board, as well as the Chancellor's announcement for firms to publish net zero transition plans, are steps in the right direction. These need to be followed up with further action from policy makers to develop globally consistent climate and sustainability disclosure standards”.

03 Nov 2021

CBI responds to 'Glasgow Breakthroughs'

Lord Bilimoria, CBI President, said the ‘Glasgow Breakthroughs’ put real substance behind countries’ climate commitments at COP26 and send a welcome signal to businesses looking to invest.

“The Breakthroughs will lead to concrete policies that support deep decarbonisation of power, transport, industry and agriculture and a means of closer collaboration between international governments and businesses."

02 Nov 2021

CBI Northern Ireland responds to Budget 2021

Angela McGowan, CBI Northern Ireland Director, said:

“The Chancellor has shown a genuine willingness to listen to business with measures that will get firms innovating and help the economy to grow. It takes several positive steps forward – through Levelling Up Fund investment to matching the Shared Prosperity Fund – but leaves more to be done to deliver the high investment, high productivity economy we need."

27 Oct 2021

CBI warns Government that next week's Budget must tackle a fundamental inconsistency in its economic strategy

On next week’s Budget/CSR, Tony said:

“Rather than a regulatory ethos that curtails investment, let’s use new post-Brexit freedoms to do the opposite. And on top of a very promising net zero strategy, let’s have the Government now make the bets needed to underwrite the most ambitious green investment in the world. Let’s seize the moment, do what it takes and do it in partnership. Let’s go for growth that lasts. And let’s start at next week’s Budget.”

22 Oct 2021

Our response to Government's new nuclear power stations finance model

Matthew Fell, CBI Chief UK Policy Director, said:

"Agreeing a new financing model for new nuclear power is a crucial step in building a secure, affordable and greener energy system in the years ahead. The RAB model has been used successfully across UK infrastructure and has the potential to secure backing from a wide range of investors. Getting new projects off the ground will be a huge boost to supply chains and can deliver jobs right across the UK."

26 Oct 2021

Our response to the Government's Net Zero Strategy & Review

Matthew Fell, CBI Chief Policy Director, said that the Net Zero Strategy and Review fills in some of the blanks on how we realise the UK’s decarbonisation ambitions.

“But there are still some pieces of puzzle missing. Strong consumer incentives to make homes more energy efficient and delivering business models to make carbon capture and hydrogen projects more investable need to be brought forward urgently. To truly transform the UK economy based on sustainable and green growth, we need to push further and faster and make key decisions on how to finance the transition to net zero."

19 Oct 2021

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